There's a lot to see on the way down to Antarctica and at the South Pole.  I took a lot of photos last year so I'm not taking as many this year.  But other folks DO take photos, and a lot of them are really good.  Amy Bender gave me permission to share some of her photos (thanks, Amy!)  They're a great collection of some of the sights we all get to see during our deployment and I'm taking this opportunity to fill in some of the cracks and gaps in the coverage of my deployment this year.  Enjoy!

Canterbury Plains, South Island, New Zealand, on the approach to Christchurch from Sydney.

Sea ice while approaching the coast of Antarctica.

McMurdo Station.  It's like a mining town.  Or parts of Grayling in the winter...

Representing Boulder, CO:  An aged Mountain Sun Brewery sticker inside the transport to the airfield.

An LC-130 waiting on the Ice Runway at McMurdo.

Mountains on the flight from McMurdo to the South Pole.

More mountains on the McM-Pole flight.


Yeah, Antarctica is pretty sweet.  Too bad we don't get to see this stuff while at the Pole. 

Snow, mountains, and sky.  Wow.

SPT early in the season before the side shields were installed. It looks like either morning or evening in this photo, but that's just because it was taken through a tinted window.  It's as bright as noon out... always.

And SPTer out at the PolCal source.

Another "Now that's Antarctica" shot.

Me blackening a new baffle that went into the camera this year.

Close-up of a 150 GHz module horn array (just over 2 inches across).  You can see the corrugations inside the horns.  They're only half a millimeter thick.  That's about 1/50th of an inch.  For more prospective: the larger cylinders in the bottom of the picture are about the diameter of AAA batteries.

Me in front of a spectacular Sundog.

El Gato Negro: the Cryo Cat (the SPTpol camera cryostat).

The cable wrap inside the telescope.  The wrap includes readout wiring, thermometry, and refrigerator lines that keep the cryostat cold.  The wrap winds and unwinds as the telescope slews left-to-right (in azimuth).

The snow drift in front of the station.  It hardly ever snows here, but it does blow in from elsewhere on the continent.  Everything will get buried eventually... even the telescope and the station.  The station is propped up on those pillars, which can be jacked up.  So presumably the station can stay above the snow for quite some time.  The telescope, however, will be unusably buried within 20 years.