Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Day 220: Talking about the Weather

We're had some crazy weather recently. This weekend we had the biggest storm I've seen since leaving California. It wasn't the hugest storm ever, but it was pretty wild for me. I had plans to snowmobile across the fjord, which got totally cancelled when I realized I couldn't see across the street.

Then today I woke up and it was -1C out. I went outside in jeans and a t-shirt (for about 10 minutes, admittedly). It was seriously warm out, it feels VERY weird - its not supposed to be this warm this time of year either. (Side note - I think I'm pretty much going to die when I hit California mid-summer.) If you stand still outside you can hear the snaps and cracks of melting ice and the little sounds of running water everywhere. Weirrrrrrd.

Here's another photo of that lunar halo from the other day:

And then we had a lunar eclipse just the other night:

Hopefully some of you caught that?

Another IPY note - there's a group of students planning on crossing Svalbard on skis starting at the end of this month. This crazy trip will involve about 10-12 weeks of skiing with an international group of five truly hard-core people. Check it out, and like me, be put to shame: here. Ulli, a member of the team who works with the UNIS logistics department, gave a little talk about the project during the IPY opening (which he very kindly gave in English pretty much just because I showed up).

Before all that ridiculous weather started this past weekend, I was able to get out for a bit to take some photos.

Lots of wind rolling over the mountains:

My buddy Olgeir (one of the Icelander's living in my building) had his scooter up in the snow when a snowplow came around and plowed out our driveway (finally) leaving his scooter up on a mini cliff of snow.

I guess it wasn't as crazy as I thought...but here's a photo of him jumping off it:

That day I drove out to the coal processing facilities near the airport. The town runs off coal (water heating, house heating, all that).

This is also very near to where I do my bryozoan sampling - next to this dock:

Not exactly the Ventura pier...

And finally, a look back at Longyearbyen.

More exciting and educational news coming soon.

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