The “Sealathlon” and Antarctic Field Training

One key responsibility while we are in Antarctica is environmental monitoring. Today we climbed up Hillary’s track every two hours, and counted the seals which were laying on the ice at Scott Base. We would like to find out if there are more seals during the afternoon, or if their activity is influenced by ocean tides. We also measure the meteorological conditions while we are counting seals to continue a long-time record which has been taken by PCAS students for several years. We are currently half way through this “sealathlon” and will continue throughout the night. Some students spotted 100 seals already ! Holy seal ! You can even help and count seals from the comfort of your couch at:


Before heading out to Windless Bight tomorrow, everybody has to get the appropriate training to live in Antarctica. Today we had a lot to learn: (1) how to set-up our tents in a blizzard, (2) how to prepare our sleeping kits for the cold nights, (3) how to use gas stoves to cook our food and (4) how to go to the toilet in the field… “It was a good day”, just said student Rob Lindeman before going to hit the hay.

The weather forecast is promising us sunshine and we are ready to step out of our comfort zone tomorrow. Windless Bight, here we come !


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