This is where the adventure ends. I was planning to write the final article of the Antarctic series shortly after coming back to the Real World®, but before I knew it, almost two months passed since I left the cold place!
My final weeks in Rothera.
I spent the last couple of weeks of my time South in Rothera with my Data Manager hat on. For whatever reason there is only one Wintering Data Manager employed by British Antarctic Survey, who is posted at Halley for the winter due to the fact that pretty much all of the science done there is computerised. At the same time a lot of the science done out of Rothera is not, and so, if there can only be one Data Manager, it makes more sense to get them to Halley. This is not to say things won’t change in the future, but that’s how it has been so far.
My main tasks over the course of the month or so was to pick up all sorts of smallish jobs and generally tidy things up here. I was trying to leave Rothera in a better shape Data Management wise than I found it. One of those tasks was to try to make the Rothera environment as similar to the Halley one as was practical. This included doing some upgrades on the server, doing a little bit of software development and ensuring both sites use the same software versions, etc. as well as logging as many user requirements for Rothera as possible, so my colleagues in Cambridge have a trace of what’s needed.
In my free time I went out a number of times for a walk around the Rothera Point to look at the sea and the mountains, to see the wildlife and to enjoy the scenery, as well as to take photographs. In addition I got a nice tour of the Diving Facilities and even managed to get out on the boat to help out with the ROV survey of the sea bed next to the quay and to look at a really cool iceberg from up close!
Finally, on the 8th of March, my Antarctic adventure came to an end. I was onboard the Dash 7 flying out to Punta Arenas in Chile, where I stayed for a couple of days. I then continued my journey North to Portugal, where Tamara and I had our holidays. After that we both came back to Poland, to stay with our families, visit our friends, relax a bit and plan the next adventures!
Some interesting statistics
I have made some interesting statistics and calculations, which I would like to share with you below:
- Number of days spent South:
- 2014 season: 452 days
- 2016 season: 462 days
- total time: 914 days (or just over 2½ years)
- Number of images taken:
- 2014 season: 17,638 pictures
- 2016 season: 35,900 pictures
- total: 53,538 pictures
- Assuming 5 cups of tea or coffee a day, I drank:
- 2,260 cups of tea/coffee in 2014 season
- 2,310 cups of tea/coffee in 2016 season
- in total, 4,570 cups or 1,142.5 litres of hot drink (assuming a 0.25l cup)
- Distance traveled by Halley VI Station between my first arrival and the time I left for Rothera: 1,418 m (assuming average velocity of the Brunt Ice Shelf is 1.23 m/day). Note, this does not take relocation of Halley VI into consideration.
You could come up with lots of other stats – if any of you have any questions, please do let me know and I’ll try to come up with a number!
Many Thanks for Reading and Following
Finally, I would like to thank each and every one of you for following my blog and reading my articles. I loved your feedback and I’m grateful for your words of encouragement. This will most likely be the final article for a while on this blog – I will keep it for posterity, however. And who knows what the future holds, there might be another ice cold adventure ahead!