Gretchen, Thursday 21 September 2006
I’m very excited to be going to the Nullarbor desert. My previous meteorite hunting experience has been in the Antarctic (a frozen desert), but to prepare for this trip, I’ve had to rethink everything I know about desert camping. Conditions in the Antarctic are very different to those we’ll experience in Australia. The biggest difference, of course, is the temperature. For this trip, I wonâ€™t need to take along all my woolly winter clothes; just a good sleeping bag and regular hiking boots.
Most of the gear we need is already in a storage locker in Perth. We’ll gather it all together when we get there, and make sure that nothing needs to be replaced or repaired. After that, weâ€™ll get a day or two of rest before we head out into the desert.
While we’re in Australia, weâ€™re also going to be shooting a video for a Nature Live presentation on meteorite hunting, which will be presented at the Museum in December. I’ve acquired a video camera and have had some preliminary training and advice. Stay tuned for this Nature Live program, which will also be webcast.
Caroline has summed up how busy weâ€™ve both been getting ready for this trip to search for meteorites. As well as all the paperwork we’ve had to fill out, we’ve also had to have medicals to make sure weâ€™re in tip-top shape for working in such a harsh environment. We both passed with flying colours!
Since returning from travels to conferences I’ve also spent much of my time getting a variety of research projects to a point where I can leave them for a few weeks. This included writing an abstract for a meeting in San Francisco in December.
I just can’t wait to get out there and start looking for meteorites.