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.
August 4-6, 2005
Written by Jessica Marquez
Well, talk about replanning and logistics! For the last few days, it has been impossible to write a daily log because we have been very busy. Furthermore, our internet access was abruptly interrupted on Thursday, and never came back. This is an account of what occurred during the last few days on camp, while the MIT team still had a presence on camp.
On Thursday, Pascal informed the camp that we would likely have to close camp early because there was a real possibility that there would not be enough flights to take us all out of Devon Island before the following Wednesday. It appears that there is a mass exodus from the remote research sites located in the Artic early in August. This put the whole camp on high gear to finish up all the remaining activities on Thursday, and begin closing up camp.
In a span of a day and a half, Julie and Jessica finished the remaining inventory, mostly the items that would remain on camp for the year. Julie and Jessica completed the 2005 food inventory, sorting through all the food that would remain on camp for the winter. This included packing them properly in coolers that stays on base. They also inventory all the fuel on base: diesel, gasoline, Jet-B fuel, and propane. The other important remaining item to account for were paper goods and wood supply.
The other major activity was closing up the MIT tent for the winter. We brought down the last of the RFID experiments (the one tracking the MIT tent) and packed up the readers. The items that remained on camp were safely stored and imaged. We hope that the images will prove to be useful for future groups that come to this site — as you can see exactly what is remaining without worrying about the name given to the item. Our tents and sleeping mats were also stored on camp, in the Core.
Jeff and Jessica bid farewell to Julie on Friday, several days earlier than anticipated. In an effort to consolidate flights, some had to leave earlier on the Friday flight. The size of camp dwindled to just fourteen people. While most were now anticipating leaving camp on Saturday, Pascal Lee informed us of some good news — we had gotten permission to access Inuit Owned Land. This meant a traversal into Haughton Crater on Friday evening. Jessica and Jeff were fortunate enough to be part of the excursion team into the Crater.
It is at this moment that I wish I were a poet rather than an engineer — as I find it hard to find the words to properly express the beauty of this landscape. It was amazing, adventurous, and simply breath taking. We made it to the Old Base Camp, where Pascal Lee collected soil samples, a scientific objective that was not accomplished in a previous excursion due to the terrain conditions. Our journey took us along the a few creeks and rivers, taking advantage of the rocky terrain to ride the ATVs on. By the end of our excursion, we were all able to identify a couple of the clear telltale signs of crater formation — breccias and shatter cones.
Once Saturday rolled around, we tied up loose ends within the MIT tent and our personal items, and proceeded to help close the whole camp. It was quite difficult from a logistics point of view to keep track of all the things going on at camp as everyone it was all done simultaneously. We did manage to gather the state of camp items before all tents were being closed. Finally, on Saturday afternoon, Jeff and Jessica left the HMP site, leaving behind only six people to finish closing camp.
Eight participants waited for the six to close camp back in Resolute Base. Our time was spent exploring the area around Resolute, catching up on emails, and beginning reports and summaries. We were once again reunited on Monday, returning "back South" on the Wednesday jet. All in all, it was a great experience, all united by the passion for exploration.