The whirlwind life of a scientist…

Life is pretty hectic this month. I’m writing this on the second of 2 days in Tromsø in between two very different trips. I returned on Monday from a cruise to the Arctic Ocean north of Svalbard & head out again tomorrow to a conference in Hobart, Aus… no rest for the wicked eh?
The cruise was a test for a ‘freeze in’ study planned for next year. We basically took the ship as far north as we could get & froze her in next to large ice floe so we could test all sorts of equipment (some new equipment & some, including the ship, that was quite well known but not often used in really cold conditions) & routines prior to the real thing.

The major test project was the setting up of a remote camp on the ice ~200m from the ship. This camp comprised a small hut (towed out by skidoo) a tent in which there was a hole in the ice through which instruments & divers could be inserted into the sea, and various instruments installed on, within, & under the ice.

Our large floe began to break apart when the wind direction changed on the Wednesday so there was a very busy evening retrieving equipment from the ice. Somehow what had taken the best part of two days to set out took 2 hours to bring in! Thursday morning things had stabilised & we were able to do a bit more science before we left the site. The weather & visibility did improve on the final day & we saw the sun rolling along the horizon:IMG_3138

Prior to the cruise I went away to Lyngen with Fjellsportgruppa. Lyngen is beautiful (see below). We had a great ski on the Saturday & terrible weather Sunday morning sent us back to the mainland to look for shelter!