Okay, the 4 week African Safari after the 2 weeks of camping and hiking was terrific. I was so forutnate to see the moutain gorillas, an abundance of animals, the masai people and their village and witness the great migration in the Serengetti. I plan to post on that in the near future.
Now I find myself above the Arctic Circle in Kotzebue, Alaska. An arctic village sadly impacted by the western world. There is too much light polllution to see the stars and auroras, unless you walk quite a ways from the village, snowmobiles and ATVs screaming by at wee hrs of the night, piles of junk everywhere, alcohol abuse seen in all ages and a beautiful Inupiaq heritage and culture that is nearly extinct. Gone forever will be the native ways, spiritual beliefs and teaching as the elders die. The new indians don’t care.
We have about 2-3 hrs of daylight a day, only getting shorter as the winter solstice approaches. It is bitter cold today with unforgiving wind. Pretty chilly and pretty cool!
Enjoy the first shots.
Visited elephant orphanage, fed a giraffe, climbed Mt Meru (15,000 ft), climbed Mt Kilimanjaro (19340 ft, the highest peak in Africa0, camped high, ate well, having a great time, wish you were here! Asante sana!
Heading back to Kenya tomorrow to start a 25 day camping safari and Zanzibar beach at the end.
I have never been to Africa. In fact I really have no idea what to expect. I do see big lions in my future. And giraffes. First I must climb a couple of big mountains. I can use the exercise. Then a 25day camping safari awaits me. The wonder of it all…
my plane leaves in 2hrs and 25 minutes….
I left Antarctica on my brother John’s birthday, February 6th. And to top off the season of the most medevacs at McMurdo Station during one season, I left Antarctica attending a patient on a medevac so that the flight nurse could stay on station, not leaving the clinic short staffed. I am sad to leave the continent of Antarctica. It is an awe inspiring place, as you can see some of my parting shots out the window of the C-130.
I am reorganizing my gear to prepare for a journey to Africa. Two big mountains and a 25 day camping safari await me. It is my goal to share a few stories and photos along the way. Right now I am smelling the roses… their fragrance is sweeeeeet!
On the Summer Solstice, I had the good fortune to witness the launch of a Long Duration Balloon, a NASA funded project. The launch site sits on the Ross Ice Shelf, about 5 miles from the frozen coastline. Specific weather conditions must exist for a launch to occur. The team has had many canceled launches, but on December 21, 2009 a warm, still and sunny Antarctic morning, the balloon release was perfect. It carried a large payload containing computer equipment to study neutrinos, the highest energy particles in the universe. For more information on the Antarctic Balloon Launches go to www.phys.hawaii.edu/~anita/web/index.htm
McMurdo Station sits on the Ross Ice Shelf. Our primary goal is to support Science for the National Science Foundation.
The photos in this post are from Holly who had a better camera than I during our survey plane ride. You can see the black and white! Also attached is a close up photoof our beloved Emperor found on our common drive, photographer unknown.
A few weeks ago I attended Sea Ice training. We learned how to assess safe travel over ice cracks, measure ice thickness, and create ice anchors (for tying something down). It was a great get-away mixed with good experience. Then we climbed down into an ice cave for blue beauty.