Tuesday, October 21, 2008

The weekly dribble

Greetings from the field camp at Explorers Cove, also known as "Camp New Harbor." Once again, the ice has lured me from home in Albany, NY ... and another research project begins.

Our science goal is to better understand how marine life becomes part of the fossil record in Antarctica. Three scientists have partnered to achieve this goal: Molly Miller (lead PI, Vanderbilt University), Sally Walker (co-PI, University of Georgia, Athens) and myself (co-PI, Wadsworth Center). Three expert divers are also key members of the team: Shawn Harper, Steve Clabuesch (dribbling coffee in the photo above), and Cecil Shin. Henry Kaiser - also a dive expert, as well as extraordinary musician and cinematographer - returns to help document our underwater study sites (and give me another guitar lesson). Claire Beynon - an artist and writer - also returns to help translate our science into formats that creative communities can enjoy. Together, I think we've assembled "The Research and Art/Science Dream Team."

One reason for this blog is to communicate weekly "happenings" from camp to K-12 teachers & students. A select group of teachers have collaborated with me over the years to engage students and develop curricula. I'm grateful to them for their hard work, and their profiles will appear here in future posts.

We are settling into camp life and there's tons of work to do, so I must be brief. Today we begin melting through the ice to make our first dive hole; others will be scoping out a site for our dive hut. The ice is in very bad shape, and working in the Cove will be extremely difficult. Everyone is up to the challenge, though!

And our infamous coffee pot has begun making dribbles...

Our best to you!


  1. In 1947 my father was on the USS Pine Island that helped chart the Antarctic. I am interested in building a labyrinth in my back yard. I went to your site. Where is the labyrinth, or is it figurative?

  2. Hi Charlotte. Your father must have told you some interesting tales about that expedition! The labyrinth is figurative in one sense (it's not a structure we built), but the ice in Explorers Cove often throws up in labyrinth-like patterns that challenge our senses.