I had a quick and wonderful visit to our neighbours at the german Neumayer station yesterday run by the german equivalent of BAS called AWI. BAS were sending a Twin Otter to pick up some cargo and my line manager John offered me the opportunity of co-piloting the flight. It's always great to get outside and go off base as I don't get a lot of excuses to do so. So I was really excited to get up and head off the following morning.
We are still using the ski-way at site 6 at the moment. After take off we flew along the "road" from 6 to 6a and then over Halley 6a.
Olly, the pilot, offered to show me the latest crack, Halloween Crack.... the one that is causing all the latest problems. We flew over and had a good nosy. It's amazing and you can see it stretch for miles and out to the coast. It is close!
We then flew on to Neumayer. It's about a three and a half hour flight and we had clear weather all the way.
It looks very ship-like to me. I made the excuse of needing the loo to dash along up to the station on my own. Olly had said he would be fine loading the cargo without me. So I toddled off and made my way in by the elevator (!). It's the block in the middle of the building in the pic above. I was then able to pop my head in the first office I came to and ask for a sneaky quick tour. Unfortunately it was very speedy and I didn't get a chance for photos inside but it was very cool. Spacious and homely I would say. I had to have a look at the garage too. This is underneath the station and houses all the vehicles in an ice garage. You enter and exit through ramp to the outside (or a lift from the inside) and this saves the vehicles getting frozen and buried. The building stands on legs a bit like the ones at Halley. But here the feet stand in the garage and they manage the raising, each year, from in there. It was amazing to see. The people were really friendly too and happy to exchange a couple of small gifts.
After the quick tour I walked back down to the skiway and we went on our merry way and had a great flight back.
Back at Halley 6 we just needed to unload the cargo, refuel the plane with Mike K and Matt and then get back to 6a in time for Saturday night dinner! Not a bad day out!