Monday the 24th we started off with a conference call with Super-TIGER collaborators back in the US. Since our first trip around Antarctica is almost complete, Super-TIGER will pass within our Line-Of-Sight (LOS) range, meaning we can have a much faster and higher quality data link with the instrument than relying on the TDRSS satellite network. JohnE then went out to the LDB site at Willy Field to set up our LOS equipment and computer that had been packed away.
On the evening of Monday the 24th, we had our official Christmas Dinner in McMurdo. Just like at Thanksgiving, there were set seating times and we ate with the rest of the LDB people at 7:00pm. The dinner was very good (Beef Wellington, Prime Rib, and for those that like seafood, Lobster. It's a harsh continent.). After dinner we went back to our monitoring shift, and JohnE left early so he could get up and head out to LDB Tuesday morning.
According to NORAD, Santa showed up in McMurdo at one point, but I was inside our office and missed him.
Christmas Day JohnE went out to LDB and worked with the CSBF folks to get our LOS system up and running. By the end of the day, we were within range and getting good data down.
Back in McMurdo, I called home and then went on a hike up Observation Hill and then down to Hut Point. It was a beautiful day, and there were lots of people taking advantage of the holiday and nice weather to do some hiking.
On Sunday I got a new roommate (I'd had the room to myself since Kenichi left), but he's only staying around until sometime at the end of this week before heading out to the Dry Valleys to do surface geology.
I also finally figured out how to stitch together photos I've taken into panoramas, but for the most part the images are too big to share anywhere. Here are 3 I took today (all are ~6 MB jpg):
360 degree view from Observation Hill
Mt. Discovery and the Royal Society Range
Panorama from Hut Point