Yesterday we traveled out to Gifford’s snow pit site here at Summit. He is interested in looking at the effects of melt on surface and near-surface snow. He was here at Summit in June and started his fieldwork then. Yesterday we returned to his site and helped him dig and sample a snow pit. First off, we had to get out to his site. It is only a few football field lengths from Summit camp, but traveling through fresh snow with heavy equipment is no easy task. Sled dogs make it look so easy!
Once we arrived at Gifford’s site, we received a brief introduction into his science and how we would be helping him.
And then the digging began…
After we cleaned off the snow pit face, Gifford took photographs of the stratigraphy. Then we were ready to collect samples for chemistry analysis. Since we could contaminate the snow pit samples with our clothes, we had to get into clean “Tyvek” suits.
These suits make our extreme cold weather (ECW) gear seem slimming! Ahhh…the things you will do for your friends! Next we sampled the snow every 3 cm, putting the snow into clean nalgene bottles.
Once we finished sampling, we enjoyed a snowmobile ride back to camp.
Stay tuned for more updates about snow sampling with Kaitlin and an amazingly beautiful day atop the Greenland Ice Sheet!