November 28, 2006 – We Move-In to Camp 1

Listen to Audio of Wally's Call (.wav)

Digging-in on the Branscomb Glacier

It’s the 28th of November.  Wayne, Larry and I have successfully established a comfortable camp on the glacier here at 9,200 feet or around 2700 meters on the upper Branscomb Glacier, this is our Camp I above Vinson Base Camp.  It took us about 6.5 hours to pull our big sleds and bring our packs up here last night.  We got in around 12:30am, brewed up and then went to bed.  Today we are finishing digging in and we are prepared to go what we call ‘around the corner’ to look at the big steep headwall that will lead us up to our high camp or Camp II.  We won’t do that until tomorrow.                               

The main report I have for you today is we can’t believe how warm it is.  I have to think about Woodie Vaughan and Martin Glynn who were here with me at this very camp for more than five days last year at about the exact same time and we were typically at about -25C, extremely cold temperatures.  Here it is still Antarctic cold as I said the snow is still dry but if you put a piece of chocolate outside against dark fabric it will melt.  You walk around in the still air and the brilliant light reflecting off the glacier wearing only the thinnest layers.  It’s unbelievable.  Sunscreen is our biggest need right now, not warm clothing.  Their a big mountain ahead of us but we are loving life up here on the Branscomb Glacier, we’ll report to you tomorrow.