Getting Ready (t minus 2 days)

southpole .....

Later: Launched

Last latched GPS: N41d59.099' W87d39.934'

T minus 2 days. Biggest snow storm in 2 years getting me warmed up for the Pole. I've gone out each morning for the past few days on "trial runs" with Dad's old Horseman camera and tripod. Yesterday, by the time I got to Lake Michigan, the shutter cock had frozen (not a good sign) and I only got half a roll. But the film grain looks very fine (APX-100) and today the shutter worked ok.

On the beach everything was pure white except the lake itself (still a stormy dark grey), two men out exercising their dogs, and a snowbreak fence winding along the beach. I got some good photos of that and finished up my roll. After that I decided to get up close to the water and noticed many shapes bobbing up and down in the water. At first I thought it was some sort of clot of weeds, but then my head flashed grimly to the image of tsunami victims washing up.

What it actually turned out to be was quite beautiful and mysterious – thousands of basketball-sized, weed-covered snowballs (iceballs?) washed up on the water's edge. One of the dogs attacked them one after another and pulverised them for fun. It was an amazing thing to see and got me in the mood for the trip. After a few weeks at the Pole, even a few weeds on snowballs are going to seem pretty darn organic.

Meanwhile, so much to do…

Later: Launched