This week at Davis: 11 August 2017

This week at Davis we're having fun curling, making a film for the Antarctic 48Hr Film Festival and visiting the plateau on a work trip.

Station update

Curling

Curling is a sport in which players slide a stone over a sheet of ice towards a target. At Davis we do it a bit differently; a block of ice is slid over a plastic sheet towards the target – same, but different. Tie this in with Friday drinks and a BBQ outside the green store and it almost feels like being back home… except for the icy bit though! Thanks to Rhys for our Olympic quality curling pitch!

48 Hour Film Festival

During the past weekend the annual Antarctic 48 Hour Film Festival took place. As the name suggests, each station gets 48 hours to write, shoot and edit a five minute film. To stir things up, you receive five things which have to be incorporated into the film. This year they were: the sound of popcorn popping, a sausage, the line 'Do you think you can light my fire?', a blind bar man and a Karate chop. Check out the final product

Darts

The interstation darts competition kicked off this week with Davis playing against Casey. Davis came out firing on all four cylinders but unfortunately were no match for the V6 powerhouse of Casey. Well done Casey, we’ll get you next time.

Lötter (Electronics Engineer)

Kerryn plays curling in the Green store.
Curling in the green store: Kezza in action.
(Photo: Barry Becker)
Curling in the Green store. Rhys, official score keeper inspecting Sharky’s stone.
Curling in the green store. Rhys, official score keeper inspecting Sharky’s stone.…
(Photo: Barry Becker)
A party scene with a lab theme for the 48hr Film Festival. People are standing around in lab coats and protective clothing.
Party scene, with a lab theme, in 48 Hr Film Festival… what…
(Photo: Daleen Koch)
Rhys showing the master his Karate style. Sharky does not look too impressed.
Rhys showing the master his Karate style. Sharky does not look too…
(Photo: Daleen Koch)
Another film scene: Robert is tied to the table in the Medical suite, Ralph is being the doctor and Kirsten is injecting Ralph with green fluid.
Another film scene: Kirsten accidentally injecting Ralph…Looks like she is enjoying it…
(Photo: Daleen Koch)
Fitzy is wearing a white protective suit and appears to be disposing of a
Film scene: Fitzy getting rid of the evidence.
(Photo: Daleen Koch)
The mechanics, Jock and Marc, showcasing their hammers for the film scene.
The mechanics, Jock and Marc, showcasing their hammers for the film scene.
(Photo: Daleen Koch)
Playing darts against Casey via a video link.
Playing darts against Casey via a video link.
(Photo: Barry Becker)

Trip to Woop Woop

Last Tuesday saw the arrival of a work trip I had been seriously looking forward to. The retrieval of the snow groomers and other equipment from Woop Woop, our ski landing area on the plateau. Can't beat a road trip, even if it is for work.

Each summer the groomers are used to make a skiway using the snow on the plateau. Then left there to brave the elements until around July. Once the ice has thickened to an acceptable predetermined amount, a team of expeditioners hits the road (ice) on a mission to dig out, check over, start and the return the groomers to station. Sounds easy…

After much packing and an early morning start we hit the road (ice). We made good time and arrived on the plateau around 10 am to find two yellow lumps poking out of the snow. After much melting, digging, chipping, scraping, sawing and not much sweat (too cold for that) we discovered a groomer. Unfortunately amongst all the digging, chipping, scraping and sawing a wire was damaged. Henceforth a slightly cold MacGyver came to the rescue and spent half an hour busily trying to keep his hands from freezing while only about five minutes actually fixing the wire.

It went something like this: warm plug so it doesn't break, warm hands, remove wire from Deutsch plug, warm hands, strip wire, warm hands, cut and fit temporary crimp, warm hands, crimp wire, warm hands, warm electrical tape (so it doesn't break) and insulate wire, warm hands, place wire back in Deutsch plug, warm hands, refit plug and warm hands.

The joys of −25°C and 20 knot winds.

After a long but successful day we managed to turn the other yellow blob into a fully functioning groomer. More defrosting and we had the skidsteer started, out of its container and loaded on a sled. Next the snow tillers came off the groomers and they as well, were loaded. A quick check over, debrief and we once again hit the road (ice), with a convoy of weary expeditioners. A Hägg in front, myself pushing a reasonably flat road in a groomer second, Millsy in the second groomer towing the skidsteer and with another Hägg following up the rear, we had an eventful trip back to station. Millsy and myself both taking full advantage of the stereos fitted to the groomers. It's not a road trip without music. I may or may not have sung into the VHF on the odd occasion!

Jock (Mechanic)

A groomer buried in blizz up at Woop Woop, requiring excavation.
A groomer buried in blizz up at Woop Woop, requiring excavation.
(Photo: Darren Shoobridge)
Expeditioners digging around the machinery buried in the snow.
A day of digging.
(Photo: Marc Mills)
Bryce and Tony digging out the groomer.
Bryce and Tony.
(Photo: Marc Mills)
Jock working on the groomer's wiring.
Jock working on getting the groomer going.
(Photo: Marc Mills)