The last couple weeks have seen the completion of Traverse 1 to Law Dome, 133km from station at an altitude of almost 1400 metres. A team of eight headed up to inspect the Automated Weather Station (AWS) and conduct some initial work on the battery and solar panels. The team experienced a variety of weather from a perfect, calm relatively warm day of −25°C to winds up to 55kts and blowing snow.
The Wilkins Aerodrome start-up is in full swing with the four member team departing this week to set up camp and commence the demanding and important work of getting the runway ready for the arrival of aircraft in late October. The Aerodrome is 65km south east of station and about a four hour journey. The work will be supported by many members of the broader Casey team from communications set up, AWS repairs and electrical and plumbing work.
The weather is changeable at Casey, with a blizzard one day and beautiful the next, but we have enjoyed some very nice weekends and perfects days in general to get on the sea ice. The team has explored the area on quads and skis with sightings of many Weddell seals, and a not so friendly Leopard Seal. The next few weeks should bring more opportunity to get out and all going well, we should see Weddell seal pups in the area.