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Stauchy Blog » Blog Archive » Does it fit?- Oct 15, 2006

Does it fit?- Oct 15, 2006

We rolled out of bed fairly late and meandered over to the coffee shop by our hotel.  The Bear something or the something bear? We met Charlie, a fellow Polie who was enjoying a patio spot at the cafe for breakfast.  We talked about the upcoming season and various travelling we had each done.  The breakfasts were huge - Charlie had ordered the “Kiwi fix”, which was a strange pile of eggs, toast, baked beans, among other things.

Shortly after grubbing, we returned upstairs and sorted what was to remain in CHC and what was going with us.  We ventured out to our noon shuttle to the CDC (clothing distribution center) to get our ECWs (extreme cold weather gear).  We got there long before the 1pm appointment and just hung out with other early birds.  At 1pm, the men and women were ushered into separate rooms to try on all of our gear - some new and some used - everything was to be tried-on and tested before leaving.  Most people had 2 bags of clothes.  Those of us wintering at the pole each had 3 bags of stuff to go through. Perhaps needless to say, Jason and I, being of the few newbies wintering at Pole AND going to Antarctica for the first time - we were the last to get through our stuff.  Here’s what we each received from the CDC:

 (1) Big Red - These are often referred to as the “warmest coat on the planet” - made by Canada Goose - it is full of down with a weatherproof shell.  Big Red has something like 12-15 pockets - 4 of which are wool lined for your hands. (10) Pair of wool, Wigwam socks; (1) Pair of “windshell/bib overalls; (1) Full carhart arctic set (pants, coat, hood); (2) Expidition grade thermal underwear - 2 each of tops and bottoms;(1) Fleece top and bottom - the mid-layer in our fill ECW outfit; (1) Lightweight thermal top and bottom; The glove variety - a couple of pair of lined leather work gloves, insulated leather mittens, insulated “ski” gloves, insulated “ski” mittens, 3 pair of glove liners (that aren’t worth a crap); The hat/face variety - (2) Balaclavas - different varietys, 1 gator (not wroth a crap),(1) cap with wind blocking protection (yazoo cap, i believe they called it); (1) pair of boots - “big blues” with multiple liners-these are comfy and toasy (but big); (1) pair of scott brand goggles and (1) pair of julbo sunglasses. Both goggles and shades have very dark lenses to block against UV a,B, and C (there is no ozone on the ice to protect us from UV C)

Jason also got a big green jacket made for Polies (branded with South Pole).  Lynette opted for 2 big reds instead.  Similarly, Jason got a pair of “bunny boots” - these are like oversized rainboots.  Lynette opted for 2 of the big blues.  To survive winter in the event of a fire, we have to pack a separate “survival bag” of ECW’s to be kept at station….these are really back-ups.

We were finally out the door at about 330pm. We took the shuttle to the botanic gardens. A recommendation from past winter-overs - soak up the green before you can’t anymore.  We left there to meet some folks at a sushi joint along the river (sala sala?).  We had sushi appetizers there and headed over to the tap room again with our new friends.  We at the same thing - aged filet on the stone with some good monteith’;s ale.  From there, the two of us and Rebecca (a summer gal in Mactown) went to see a movie - Little Miss Sunshine — a “holy crap” funny movie (complete with a jumbo pocorn for the Stauch’s). We walked back with Rebecca and split to our separate rooms.  Tomorrow is D-day (Departure for the ice)


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