Monday, March 19, 2012

Saying Goodbye..

Hello All!
Rebecca here with one of the last posts of this year's Polar Science Program's journey to the arctic! Like Kyle mentioned, the adventure was truly a once in a lifetime experience. I am so glad I was chosen for this trip and that the USNA STEM program was able to send me (and that those I went with put up with me). I went to help with the chemistry side of sampling and CDR Joe Smith was incredibly patient with me as I attempted to learn the ins and outs of field chemistry. For starters, electrical tape and zip-loc bags (or really any type of plastic) are no match for -20* C. The same holds true for glass bottles (once they warm up), ball point pens, and hands covered by only glove liners and nitrile gloves. Fortunately, sharpies and paper proved to do just fine in the cold weather so at least that's something. At the end of the day though, I learned that not everything will go as planned and sometimes making it up as you go is the best way to get things done.

All in all, the adventure to the bitter north was absolutely awesome. I hope the work CDR Smith and I put in is all worthwhile too and we will find out soon as we begin working with the samples we collected. I know that Kyle, Ben, and Will really accomplished a lot though so I'm glad we were able to help with the BROMEX project. We were able to meet some great scientists that really made the trip even more worthwhile. I wish them the best in the next few weeks as they complete their projects as well.

 I do not know if I will ever get over how gorgeous Alaska is.I kept thinking how photo-shopped everything looked because it was hard to believe a place so amazing actually exists. I definitely want to go back in the summer, and maybe even make another winter adventure for more skiing and possibly another peek at the northern lights. I highly recommend everyone make it up to Alaska at least once in their life. It's a trip worth taking, and if you want to make it really great, fly with ERA airlines. They will be sure to make your trip to the frozen tundra as authentic as possible.Thank you for all your support and hopefully we can continue our adventures next year!

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