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Victoria University Antarctic Research Expedition Science and Logistics Reports 1994-95: VUWAE 39

9. Weather

9. Weather

Weather during the time in the field was quite variable. For the first week it remained clear and sunny with light winds. After this time conditions deteriorated to low cloud, variable visibility and poor surface definition. On the odd day snow fell, occasionally quite heavily. Heavy snow days combined with the relatively warm temperatures, led to problems with wet clothing. A storm with up to 40 knot winds and heavy blowing snow was encountered over a three day period toward the end of the trip. This storm did not help pull-out procedures.

Despite the lack of perfect conditions for the majority of the trip, the weather did not greatly hinder progress. Six days were lost to weather as a result of strong wind and/or very poor visibility. It is worth noting that work only continued due to the fact that we were travelling on the relatively safe terrain of the Ross Ice Shelf. In many other parts of Antarctica travel would have been unwise.

Temperatures in the field averaged around −5 to −7°C, the coldest being about −17°C and the warmest +1°C. Again, the mild temperatures at times caused problems with wet clothing.

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A more detailed account of weather has been submitted to the Scott Base science technicians in the "Met Book".