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Barrow, AlaskaCaribou Poker CreekLena River, SiberiaSvalbard, Norway Prince Patrick Island, Canada
Summit, Greenland
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 Do You Have Fun? View next topic
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Joined: 23 Mar 2004
Posts: 118

PostPosted: Fri Jun 04, 2004 2:36 pm Reply with quoteBack to top

Students ask me in their emails if I'm having fun, or
What do you do for fun, Mrs. Bejin?
Yes, we have fun. Some days are very busy from early until late for scientists. They might pack a lunch and be out in the field all day, getting back late in the evening and looking in the refrigerator for leftovers from dinner. Other days, like yesterday, there are only a few routine things that need to be done early and then later in the day, so there is more free time.

Yesterday was the day of the big race! The Second Annual Toolik Lake Half Marathon started at 4:00 PM and continued until the last runner returned (about 2 1/2 hours.) I was a member of the race crew. I helped runners tape on their numbers, worked with the rest of the crew to bring water to 2 spots, helped hold the finish line, and took pictures. There were 3 runners and 4 crew members, so runners were well supported. The race course began in camp, up the camp road to the Dalton Highway, south to the pipeline road where they turned east and then north, and runners ran along the Trans-Alaskan Pipeline for half of the way. The pipeline road led them back to the north where it again joined the Dalton Highway and back to camp for the finish line. Beautiful views along the way, but a lot of dust from the big haul trucks on the highway. Since the highway and the pipeline and camp roads are the only roads up here, Those are the roads for the race. Runners were back in time for dinner.

There is a meeting trailer where movies can be watched-no television reception here. We watched the movie Shreck while we were here, Halim brought it from home. Everyone brought plenty of books from home, so people read in their free time. Just talking to each other, people in your own research group or the people from the other research groups or the people who work here, is a very fun part of the day, and a way to learn a lot.

Hikes are always fun, because it is so different in the tundra. Hahn and I hiked along the boardwalk that goes for a long way behind the camp, on the other side oy the lake. The boardwalk goes between various research sites, and is above the tussocks, so most of the way you don't have to walk on the tussocks. Tussocks wobble when you step on them, and often it can be wet in between them, so the boardwalk was great. It is only one board wide, so we had to concentrate to keep our balance. A short hike out of the camp and across the Dalton highway leads to a tiny lake that has two loons on it. We also watch for the ground squirrels as we walk. They look like prairie dogs with a squirrel head. The dig their homes into the ground where they can find space.

I'll send pictures of the race and the ground squirrels later today. It is time to go out to our work site.
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Toolik Field Station Lena River, Siberia Svalbard, Norway Summit, Greenland Prince Patrick Island, Canada Healy Icebreaker Caribou Poker Creek Barrow, Alaska