Yesterday and today has been windy and cloudy on Qikiqtaqruk. The two days before were glorious, but instead of doing science we headed on a boat ride around the island, to Avadlek spit, Lopez point and to Ptarmigan Bay on the mainland. It was both us the rangers and the AWI crew and Cameron so it was the whole team – a really fun outing.
Impressive cliffs, muskox and a bear. Santo and Jakob also went out to Advalek spit to do some ‘outreach’ filming with the IRIS. They swam in the open Arctic Ocean, drying off in the air afterwards. So all in all we’re doing well, though exhaustion and cabin fever is hitting in and we’re all feeling the strain of fieldwork a bit.
It was great to get various deliveries come in with the rangers. A new drone for starters, plus a load more freshies fromTeam Kluane. We feel very much vitalised and vitamined up with all things colourful and crispy. We also got an awesome care package from Gillian – a drone magazine, fancy chocolate, rubber ducks, a pirate puzzle, little parachute men, snapping rubber things, an air freshener. It is awesome!! We need to do a blog post just about that!
This evening Isla even flew the new drone! Santo had flown it the previous day. So we are all drone pilots now. Isla even took some really awesome drone footage (not) of Pauline Cove on her flights!
The data present from up here is that Isla entered all of the phenology data and reran the interval censoring model and… 2016 had a somewhat early spring – right on the trend line, but not nearly as early as last year. Senescence also started bit early this year, so a bit shorter of a growing season than last year.
Now the weather has taken a turn for the worse, so we have to figure out when best to try and squeeze in the last field days. In the bad weather, we have started packing. We are trying like mad to eat up all of the food that won’t survive the winter. Too many cans of chick peas and such, but it is better to have too much than too little!
Rain and shine on Qikiqtaruk
Oh and the other bad news is that our flight is scheduled for 10am in the morning on Monday!!! Oh no! That means an 8am wake up to do weather checks. That is going to be horrible. Only 5 more days on the island…we are all both ready for the end of fieldwork and sad to be leaving.
That’s all from us, for now, from Qikiqtaruk.
Compilation of emails by Haydn and TeamDrone