Living at Casey
During the summer about 150–160 expeditioners visit Casey, including the Wilkins Aerodrome ground crew. About 16–20 people remain on station over winter.
Living at Casey is very comfortable and has often been compared to ski lodges, with some exceptions. The local ‘supermarket’ is substituted by a walk in cupboard called ‘Woollies’, where all expeditioners can browse the shelves for soap, linen etc., in a cashless society.
The daily weather can dictate station activities. When blizzards inhibit fieldwork, the main living area (the Red Shed) has indoor climbing, a home theatre, a gym, a photographic dark room, a library and many communal sitting areas for expeditioners to pass the time.
Casey living is very communal and all expeditioners contribute to the day-to-day running of the station. Rosters are set up for Saturday duties that may include vacuuming the living area, shovelling snow, cleaning the cold porches etc. Expeditioners are rostered to help the chef out in the kitchen (‘slushy duty’) to help feed the station.
Expeditioners have private bedrooms and share a bathroom between three people. Before the summer melt, water is scarce and therefore all expeditioners are limited to two-minute showers every second day.
Casey living is also very social after work and on days off. Every Saturday night expeditioners dress up for dinner and occasionally a theme night will be organised – with very adventurous costumes! The Casey bar ‘Splinters’ is often occupied after work and on weekends with expeditioners playing pool and darts and drinking the home brewed beer.
Casey boasts a special hydroponics building where lettuce, green vegetables, tomatoes and fresh herbs are grown. These are welcome additions to the winter diet.