This week at Casey: 17 March 2017

With much work completed the team welcome winter and say 'farewell' to the last of the summer crew.

Farewell summer friends

On Monday the 13th of March those of us staying for winter said goodbye to the last of the summer crew and hello to a couple of fresh winter folk, including our new station leader. It was an emotional time for us as we have made many new friends over summer, many of whom we will miss greatly.

The trip to Wilkins Aerodrome started later than usual with the flight scheduled to depart Hobart not before midday. I left after morning tea in the tractor with less than ideal conditions (low visibility and drifting snow) expecting a call on the satellite phone about an hour down the road to tell us that the flight was delayed due to weather. The call never came and we made it to Wilkins in about four hours, where the weather had appeared to deteriorate further. Priscilla (the bus) arrived about an hour after us full of people who were excited to get home, but the aviation crew were apprehensive about the conditions.

The weather seemed to clear up at exactly the right time, and out of the clouds appeared the A319. The conditions worsened after landing and the pilots were keen to make a very quick turnaround, so a few hugs and goodbyes later, the plane was loaded and taxiing in less than half an hour.

Driving back in a Hägglunds was tough as it was hard to see more than a few metres ahead until about halfway when the weather cleared up to a beautiful, calm evening to welcome us to our winter. Moods on station were good as we got back, with everyone in high spirits despite the goodbyes. There is only 19 on station right now, with three more to come down from Wilkins in a few weeks, and it feels like more of a home than ever. The days are getting shorter and the nights colder as we head into winter.

To all the friends that have departed over the last few weeks, I would like to say thank you for making the past few months truly memorable.

Adam Roberts

The A319 aircraft on the ice runway being boarded by expeditioners in yellow suits
Snowbird 1 on the runway at Wilkins.
(Photo: A Roberts)
Aircraft taking off on ice runway in the snow
Snowbird 1 the A319 taking off on the last flight for the…
(Photo: A Roberts)
Three expeditioners in yellow suits smiling at camera
Happy expeditioners getting ready to fly home.
(Photo: A Roberts)
Tractor vehicle towing a shipping container in front of the Antarctic Circle sign
The challenger transporting precious cargo back to station from Wilkins Aerodrome.
(Photo: A Roberts)
View out to sea of ice bergs with station in distance
The view returning to Casey station.
(Photo: A Roberts)

Casey station welcomes winter

Winter has begun and with the change of season comes a change of scenery and all hands were on deck to rearrange the wallow and mess to better accommodate the winter team.

Now with just 22 of us on station everything has been reduced to suit this: 22 cups, 22 seats, 22 packets of Tim Tams!

Although our summer 'family' has left us we have made Casey our home.

Big thanks to all involved.

Ducky

Expeditioner with vacuum cleaner
Watto vaccuming the wallow.
(Photo: S Gilliies)
Two expeditioners standing with arms around each other
Simo and Muscles take a break from the post summer clean up.
(Photo: S Gillies)
Expeditioner standing in kitchen with plates in foreground
Adam cleaning the kitchen
(Photo: S Gillies)
Expeditioner in bedroom with vacuum cleaner
Rick on West Wing duties
(Photo: Brendan Hopkins)
Chairs stacked on tables in the mess and Adam holding a mop
The new roomier Casey mess.
(Photo: B Hopkins)
Expeditioner cleaning a bathroom
Newly arrived SL Jacque, on bathroom cleaning duty
(Photo: B Hopkins)