After being ill and bedbound for the last week I grabbed the opportunity to help out the GAs with a group on an ice climbing recreation trip on Sun. After the thick fog had cleared just on time we set off in two full snocats. Mat went ahead on a skidoo to start setting up the climbs at Creek 3. I was driving the slower snocat, so we got there about 10 min later and started to kit everyone out for the climb. There was still some sea ice and a few emperor penguins were ambling around and having a swim. After teaching some belaying techniques I got a chance to do all three climbs. Ice conditions were good and the weather stunning with high cirrus making a halo around the sun.
After some sandwiches we went down onto the sea ice for a closer look at the penguins who were quite happy to waddle up to us for some photos. There was a visible tidal crack, but the sea ice was still thick and fine to walk on. BAS requires sea ice to be 15 cm thick and wind speeds lower than 15 kts for save travel.
We went back for some more climbing and snacks. I had a quick look around for the little blue ice pool and to see if one can still hear the ice cracking in the cove when it’s quiet, for which we found the perfect place to sit last year when we saw orcas here.
I’m glad I got the chance to go on this rec trip because later trips were either full or the weather was too bad to go. Also with relief, the module move, and the early departure from Halley there were very few opportunities to go offbase for some recreation.