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> Winds Howl, Driving Ice-cold Rain Everywhere, An Arctic Storm Hits Camp
post Jul 26 2005, 02:19 PM
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Joined: 27-April 05
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July 20, 2005

The weather reports are correct. During the night an Arctic storm has arrived. All day long a slow steady ice-cold rain driven by high winds seeks to penetrate anything and everything. The winds in camp are probably around 30 to 40 miles per hour. Along the ridge tops the winds may top 60 miles per hour. There is not much we can do today except maintain camp and stay dry. Some members of the team monitor the river to determine the stormís effects. All in all, we learned that the river rose between 8 and 10 inches today. The storm lasts all day, finally diminishing late in the evening. After the rain stops and the wind dies down, we take stock of camp. To our pleasant surprise, everything, except one tent, weathered the storm just fine. Weíve got some unexpected free time!! After preparing for tomorrowís sampling trips, many members of our team walk to the riverís mouth to look at the bay. Iíve contrasted some pictures of the bay still reeling from the stormís effects with some pictures of the bay on a calm day to show the magnitude of the stormís force.

Storm pictures

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Calm pictures

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Added July 23, 2005

We learned some more information about the storm and its power. This storm hit Thule with enough force that the base went into a storm-based lockdown. Iíve heard, but not had confirmed, that winds on base may have reached 60 miles per hour. Many bridges were damaged, there was considerable concern about the riverís increasing depth and flooding, and the water supply was damaged. A lot of work is being done along the base to prevent future flooding problems as well as examining the impact that glacier lakes may have on the base. (The lakes had been forming before the storm.)
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