It has been another day full of training. The safety training was very fun, we got to practice lighting the camping stoves that are the survival kit and pitching the tents. The tents are a very cool one layer Gore-tex shell.
We have learned a lot about preventing frostbite and hypothermia too. Although we have had very mild weather so far (today was even in the positives (2 C)), the weather here can change very quickly and this is the main factor to be aware of! Especially when out on the sea-ice.
In case for any reason we get stranded in the field not being able to return, the survival kit should last 3 days for two people. The whole system here is really well designed for emergencies and they have a really quick response time. I know that this whole talk might seem terrifying, but in reality, we are training to know what to do in emergencies, and how to minimize any risks. That makes the whole process much safer.
After the seminar that was at 8 pm today, I finally got to walk to Scott’s hut, and have a closer look at the seals and the scenery; it was very nice after spending most of my time indoors. There was a really cheeky seal that was moving a lot around, most of the other seals didn’t move much. The views from the hut are beautiful, a vast length of the sea ice speckled with dark dots, the seals, and magnificent mountains of the continent on the background.
We ended up having a funny discussion on the walk back to our dorms, which also highlights some of the difficulties we might see at first. Because tomorrow two groups in our course will start the sea ice training, and on our walk back we were only women, we started discussing the toilet situation. We have all been issued a pee bottle to bring to the field. Mind you, we are wearing at least two layers and then the waterproof pants that have suspenders attached to them. In my case, my pants don’t have clips that I can open and release the suspenders; I have to take my parka off in order to be able to pull my pants down! There is a chance that they will have some of the female cones around – that ones that let you pee standing (I am really hoping so). Some say that there is a learning curve to use one of those cones! Ha, I will let you know how we manage!