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> June 6, 2006, My Last Full Day at Summit Camp - Is that an igloo? Is that a sun dog?
post Jun 15 2006, 01:25 AM
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High Temperature: – 10 degrees Celsius
LowTemperature: -22 degrees Celsius

My Last Full Day on the Ice Sheet - Is that an igloo? Is that a sun dog?

Today was my last full day of the ice. I will miss this place. I don’t want to forget anything about my expedition. The staff at Summit have been wonderful. Kathy, the camp manager, did a great job making people feel at home and making sure that everyone had everything they needed to be safe and productive.

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You never stop being a sixth grader.
Back row: Kathy, Shannon, Andrew, Brad, Rosemary
Front row: Pat, Sarah, Jeff, and Katie

After being out in the cold, we could always count on Sarah and Rosemary to welcome us with a fresh batch of cookies right out of the oven. They also made great lunches and dinners for us so all we had to worry about was our research.

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Sarah and Rosemary

I am amazed that a place like Summit exists. The environment is not very kind to a permanent camp. The snow and the wind want to bury everything. In fact, if I had visited Summit camp last year, I would have needed to walk down into the Big House because most of it was buried in snow. The Big House is now built on metal stilts so that it can be raised as the snow level rises. Some of the earlier structures of Summit camp are buried in the snow.

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Big House on Stilts

Although I have been at Summit for over two weeks, there is one place that I never explored. John Pailthorpe from the United Kingdom said I really needed to check it out.

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Igloo at Summit Camp

As I entered the igloo, my mouth dropped. Inside, there was a bed and a light. Pretty cool. I think that anyone would be quite comfortable in here.

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Can you see the sunlight shining through the ice?

This afternoon, I had a chance to ride a snowmobile about 5 kilometers north of the camp to watch Meredith, Justin, Mike, and Terry drill ice cores.

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Why are Justin and Meredith wearing purple gloves?

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Look at the air trapped in this broken piece of the ice core. These air bubbles give scientists clues as to the past atmosphere of Earth.

Do you remember one of my earlier journal entries about halos (a rainbow circling the Sun caused by ice crystals in the air). In that journal entry I told you that I hoped to see a sun dog. Well, yesterday a sun dog appeared around 10:00 p.m. last night!!

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Some people in the Arctic refer to the two smaller bright spots as the sun’s dogs. Isn’t this place awesome! Thank you, Xavier, for a copy of this photo.

Arctic Fact of the Day: Greenland has the world’s lowest population density (0.026 humans per square kilometer). Even Australia, which has a low population, is 100 times more crowded.
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