As the field season progressed, the MIT team recorded and posted daily a record of their activities, along with a few selected photos.
The field site's logbook has been duplicated here.
July 31, 2005
Written by Sarah Shull
Feeling HOT, HOT, HOT....today was the warmest day so far of the 2005 HMP field season. If I had to guess, I'd say that the temperature was close to 50 degF this morning. Everyone was happy to not have to wear hats, gloves or winter coats. Jeff even joked about putting on his shorts and t-shirt. Since today was Sunday, Pascal proposed that we all sleep in and instead of having breakfast at 7 AM and lunch at noon; we had a brunch at 10:30 AM. Jessica and I offered to help Jack, the cook, with the brunch and we made blueberry pancakes while Jack made omelets. The brunch was quite a success!
After brunch, Julie, Jessica and I went on an exploration walk with Sophie and Gordon, who have been investigating the area. We walked north-northwest of camp towards Trinity Lake . Sophie and Gordon were looking for new sights to do their rock density measurement; we were just along for the scenery and exercise. During the traversal, we saw limestone and sedimentary deposits, as well as a lot of melting snow. The MIT folk got a quick lesson on geology and crater morphology while overlooking Haughton Crater (though it was still a few miles away). We even had an encounter with wildlife today (see picture below)....probably not what you expected, right?!
While we were out walking, Jeff went a traverse with Pascal, the other folks who arrived yesterday and the Hamilton-Sundstrand team. Jeff's traverse report: The official purpose of this traverse was training — getting the new crew acquainted with the crater, with the ATV's, and with the mechanics of getting around. Boy, did we get trained!!! I never knew ATV's could handle terrain like that. And they go pretty fast, too. We did a total of about 15 km. in each direction, stopping many times on the way out and coming back fast, just the opposite of what you would do for an EVA traverse, where you want to go out to the limit at the beginning and work your way back.
We saw many small living oases, started by the organic remains of a dead animal, giving birth to vegetation. We also caught sight of a musk ox about 200 m. away. He was quite shy and disappeared behind a rock pretty quickly, but it was impressive to see one.
At Gemini Hills, we spent about an hour walking, since the terrain was too muddy for the ATVs. Just the way you expect on an EVA — take the ATVs as far as you can and then walk. All in all, it was a great training exercise. We were pretty hungry by the time we got back, and a fresh cooked ham was wonderful.