January 9, 2007
Position 71° 32.774' N 125° 51.394' W
My last full day on the Amundsen began at 5:30 am. I Skyped (video phone called) my high school's TV studio using the webcam configured by Martin and the subsequent interview was broadcast throughout the entire school. The connection was better than I expected and I hope everything turned out okay on their end. Thanks to the cup of coffee I had while on the camera, I was unable to get back to sleep. After lying in bed for 45 minutes I went to my desk and organized some photos on my laptop. The ship has an intranet system known as "shares" where information can be exchanged. On the server is a photo folder where everybody uploads their best pictures. When something happened, someone had a camera so I will be coming home with 10x the pictures I thought I would.
At 8:30 Monika, Wojciech, Debbie, and I were back on the ice. The temperature dropped overnight but work proceeded quickly and we were back on the Amundsen by 9:45. The lack of sleep had caught up with me and after lunch I managed to sneak in a quick hour long nap.
In the afternoon, I did a final load of laundry and tagged along with Grieg Niemi as he ventured out to clean an ice hole that he and his wife, Andrea, dug two days ago. They have placed sediment traps beneath the surface of the water and everyday have to make sure that the hole has not resealed itself. From there, Greg and I wandered over to watch Tim, Bruce, Peter, and Sergey put up a small weather tower on the ice. The data logged on this tower can then be compared to that of Tim's tower on the bow of the Amundsen to give them a more complete picture of the wind patterns over the surface of the ice. They also plan to launch a weather balloon tomorrow to get even more information.
Following dinner, I sorted some more zooplankton with Debbie before heading back to the ice. At the science meeting it was announced that weather pending, my plane should be leaving at around 12:30 tomorrow. These three weeks have gone by incredibly fast. Unfortunately when you go somewhere, you leave another place behind. I am ready to go home, but I will miss this beautiful place and all of the people who have made me feel so welcome.