After two weeks of travelling I finally arrived at Halley on the 29thNovember. We flew from Novo in poor weather but flew out of it into sunny skies and views of pristine snow and ice. Due to the weight of the cargo we were carrying we had to make a refuelling stop at Neumayer research station. Neumayer is a German station about 700km from Halley, although only there for about 30 minutes we managed to have a look inside the station briefly as our plane was soon refuelled and ready to go.
On our descent to Halley we got an idea of how remote our new home was. I couldn’t see anything but until just a few minutes before landing. I don’t think I’ll ever forget the first glimpse of the Halley modules basking in the sun, rising out of the snow.
The evening we arrived the weather was warm (-5) and sunny, with little wind. This presented the perfect opportunity to go for a walk and get my bearings. As I walked around the west side of the modules the snow windtails loomed above me, these are formed on the leeward side of the buildings from the prevailing easterly winds blowing around the buildings and settling to make large mounds of snow. These mounds are seemingly the only feature for miles around.
My first week at Halley has been filled with training including all the onsite procedures, night watch duties, how to use breathing apparatus for fire rescue, as well specific training for my role; mainly flight following. During our free time we've been getting to know the current winters and enjoying the comfortable station. Our nights have been filled with playing darts and pool, watching films, and going to the gym to work off the great food.In a few weeks the rest of the wintering team will be arriving by ship, the RSS Ernest Shackleton