This week on Macquarie Island has been windy!
Wind gusts over 100 km per hour have been recorded on most days this week. Accordingly station activity has been focused on ‘battening down the hatches’, and ensuring that our infrastructure is storm ready and nothing has moved overnight.
Winds of these speeds whip the large swells of the southern ocean on our western shore into a formidable sight. One can only shiver at the thought of the conditions faced by the early visitors to the island, many of whom were lost in shipwrecks during storms such as these.
Monday saw waves breaking over the isthmus, and had quite a few expeditioners scrambling for cameras and finding good vantage points to gain only cold hands, and inevitably a salt encrusted lens, after enduring a long wait for the next wave.
Our all-station emergency response team has been busy training again this week. Friday afternoon was spent reviewing our emergency response procedures in search and rescue, followed by practical training and drills with our stretcher, complete with wheel, that may be used in the event of transporting an injured party overland for long distances.
Those of us on station have missed the company of our rangers this week. They headed out to the field huts at the beginning of the week, and have been finding sheltered locations to commence bird monitoring activities for the season.
In all, while our spare time has been focused indoors this week, we have all enjoyed the opportunity to engage in our various hobbies and projects in the evenings, or attend a movie in the cinema.