Quad Run to Auster
The weekend of the 11th and 12th June looked like a good chance for a recreational trip to Macey — the last chance to get away before midwinter, however the weather didn’t look that good for Sunday. As the end of the week got closer the forecasts confirmed that the winds would be up Sunday but Saturday was still looking good.
Plan B was swung into action. Plan B was a day trip to Auster rookery, starting early to time arrival with the lightest part of the day. Because it was out and back in the day more people could go along.
So Friday night we had the quads loaded and fuelled ready to go. Departure time was 8:00 am. The day length was 58 minutes 27 seconds with sunrise at 12:19 pm.
In the darkness of Saturday morning, six intrepids headed off under the stewardship of Lisa, our trip leader. Following were Tim, Fearless, Skiddy, Cotty and Dave. The wind was up a bit in the high 20’s and temperature around -17 degrees C.
The track was a mixed bag with some very easy sea ice and in other places kilometres of deep rutted sastrugi. With only short stops to check on everyone and make minor adjustments to tie downs and helmets we were at Auster by midday.
Spending a little less than an hour watching the penguins and taking photographs of the rookery and the various members of the emperor penguin delegations that came across to see what we were up to, we refuelled, had a drink and a bite to eat and started back to base.
The day proved to be a great training run with the added bonus of visiting the Auster rookery and riding into the most magnificent pre-dawn sky scape.
Back at base after hot showers the length of the long strenuous day started to show. Aching backs, thighs, shoulders and almost paralysed accelerator thumbs. Seven to eight hours on a quad across the sea ice is a big call. The war stories around the bar are becoming more intrepid by the day...