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Augustine Volcano Installation Update (2)


10:30 am

The Augustine project continues to be on schedule. Yesterday, crews finished the installation at site AV04 and came close to completing AV01.

Today the weather has changed and clouds are coming down over the volcano. Although it represents a change in plans, it`s hard not to be in awe of the thick, smoky white clouds rolling and billowing over the top of Augustine. The temperature has dropped quite a bit and it looks like it might rain. Because of the clouds the helicopter will not be able to fly up to the AV05 site. Currently a field crew is up at the AV01 site putting the final pieces together and should be finished shortly. A second crew is heading over the main land to work on the Ursus Head site, AC59.

While others out in the field, a couple people stay behind at the base camp to help load and unload the helicopter and do computer work. Meanwhile food is prepared for that evening’s dinner and next morning`s breakfast, water is fetched from the fresh water stream, and the camp gets cleaned up.

1:30 pm

AV01 installation is complete and the crew is going to head over to begin installation on the AV02 site. Clouds now completely cover the volcano and rain is beginning to fall intermittently.

Camp Set-up: The Rundown

Meals have been outstanding, thanks to cook Katy Willis. The kitchen/dining room/office is set up in a 15Wx25Lx10H WeatherPort tent. Six gas burners and a kitchen sink are the perfect set up for serving 10+ people. The food has been incredible considering the circumstances. Hot, hardy meals are served at both breakfast and dinner and brown bag lunches are packed in the morning. With the exception of a couple items, all the food has been keeping really well. Most eccentric recipe so far: peanut butter and mustard sandwiches, enjoyed almost daily by one of the crew members for lunch.

The sleeping tents comfortably fit two people with cots and sleeping bags. While everyone has been able to keep warm at night, there have been complaints of obnoxiously loud snoring and foxes ‘marking their scent’ on tent flaps.

To get to the semi-private bathroom, it’s a short walk back through 10-foot tall brush before approaching a fly infested wooden bench that is supporting a not-so-white toilet seat. Built with a mini-eave it’s actually not bad at all, especially because the brush has been cut just right so while using this ultra-mod powder room there is an picture perfect view of the volcano.

Strange but True

A strange rock configuration appeared outside of the WeatherPort looking like something straight out of the Blair Witch Project. Field crew noticed this unusual arrangement while returning from the field. The cook suspiciously declined to comment.


Last modified: 2020-01-28  22:54:08  America/Denver