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Vinson Massif: Hahn & Team Spend Christmas in Antarctica, Prepare for Flights Home

As it turns out, it WAS a white Christmas.  Still some clouds and a few flakes in the air this morning, but it was calm and quiet and obviously improving. 

We greeted one another with Merry Christmases and smiles and suggestions that “today could be the day.”  As the sky began to go blue and the sun came out, everybody took to walking around outside… then skiing and biking and simply hanging out and conversing.  It was such a pleasure to see the surrounding mountains again that folks were reluctant to go inside.  The decision was still to be made concerning the Ilyushin, but there was plenty to do as we waited.  There were outings in the camp vehicles to surrounding hillsides, there was exercise to be had on the snow roads within camp and as the afternoon went on, there were skydivers to watch.  A group revved up one of the Twin Otters, climbed 10,000 feet overhead, and jumped out.  Twice, with each skydiver landing perfectly in control and on target. 

At our excellent Christmas Dinner, the word came that the flight was on.  The Ilyushin left Punta Arenas at 8 PM and is expected in at half past midnight.  We’ll be in South America by morning.  My team is excited, naturally.  And relieved.  And ready to get back to see loved ones and friends.  But there is also a little sadness at leaving our Antarctic home and friends.  Not exactly what we’d have chosen, but this will definitely be a Christmas to remember. 

Best Regards,
RMI Guide Dave Hahn


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