I cannot believe the BIG DAY is finally here! Holy crap. It still hasn’t hit me yet that in a few days I will be in a wild place so different from everything I have ever seen that it may as well be a different world. Right now I am feeling anxious, nervous, excited, and desperately hoping that I am ready for the biggest adventure of my life!
Having had to pack for both Australia (for 5 months) AND Antarctica has been exhausting, and I have to admit, up to the last minute I have been getting things together. And I should be leaving in about 3 hours! I still have to say goodbye to Ethan (I told him he couldn’t come to say goodbye to me at the airport with my family because I wouldn’t be able to bear it), kiss all my pets goodbye, and leave things in order. Its crazy! Anyways, I meant to do this earlier, but here it is: My Antarctic packing list for the Summer season of 2010.
Gear List for Antarctica January – February 2010
- North Face Greta Triclimate jacket
- Water/Windproof pants
- North Face ski pants – perfect with lots of great pockets and insulation << UPDATE: performed excellently for long days of fieldwork.
- Patagonia Rainshadow pants – plain waterproof pants
- Mountain Hardwear windstopper fleece – super warm!
- REI heavy insulated base layer << UPDATE: this shirt was amazing. Seriously amazing. Super soft, form fitted warmth that could be worn multiple days. On warmer days it was enough on its own (plus lightweight base layer).
- REI heavy insulated pants << UPDATE: also amazing – thick, soft fleece that was so comfortable to wear around base.
- Base layers:
- Patagonia Capilene 3 crew neck
- Patigonia Capilene 3 zip neck
- SmartWool midweight zip neck
- Long underwear (x2)
- Scarves (x2)
- Capilene 3 T-shirt (Ethan insisted on this but I’m not too crazy about it!)
- Ex-Officio underwear (they claim you only need two pairs for 6 weeks!!)
- Underwear (x5)
- Neck garter
- Hats (x3)
- Glove liners
- Manzella Gore-Tex windstopper gloves (more dexterous for field work)
- Gore-Tex ski gloves
- Manzella Adventure-100 gloves
- wool sock liner
- SmartWool thin socks
- SmartWool heavy socks
- SmartWool Mountaineering socks << UPDATE: these (worn alone) kept my feet perfectly warm and cushioned for days of hiking on volcanic scree.
- Asolo Stynger boots – waterproof, insulated, and badass! << UPDATE: these boots were sturdy, comfortable, and durable throughout daily heavy use. I got a size up from my normal to leave enough room for thicker/layered socks, and foot swelling from extended hiking and it was a good idea to do so.
- SuperFeet insoles
- snow goggles
- Polar sunglasses
- lots of handwarmers
- energy bars
- Camelback daypack
- hygiene kits
- camp towel
- duffel bag
- journals and field notebook
- waterproof camcorder – my Xmas present from Ethan!!!!!
- battery re-charger for iPod
- portable headphones
- books + booklight
- portable external hard drive – Western Digital My Passport 500 GB for all those pictures and videos!!!!
I think that this is a pretty complete gear list for my Antarctic trip, and it should cover all the bases. I will receive Extreme Cold Weather gear (coat, gloves, pants, long underwear as well as camping gear) from the USAP station in Christchurch, New Zealand (where we will be spending 2 nights before leaving for Antarctica, getting everything in order).
I will write again, as soon as I have net access!