Saturday, 23 July 2011

Twaz the night before fieldwork.......and all was hot and frantic!

Those of you who are not in the USA at the moment, might not have heard that its rather warm over here. In fact, I sit writing this post in a puddle of perspiration, with an aircon unit optimistically puffing air in my direction, shifting the 85 F (~29 C) air around my office. I can't complain, as it is 105 F (~40+C) outside. With temperatures soaring into these dizzying height, it must time to do some fieldwork!

Dealing with both high humidity and temperatures in the City of Philadelphia is bad enough, but when this is combined with the splendid isolation of the Badlands...keeping cool and hydrated is a matter of life or death (This is just a subtle/gentle reminder to all my field crew who might read this post tonight!). The heaviest thing we haul into the field, bar our own bulks, are gallons of water to drink. The heat in South Dakota is wonderfully dry, so evaporation from your skin is rapid, and you don't even know your loosing pints of water an hour. One of the most important things to remember, is to simply drink. This is why my spanking new hydration pack can take two gallons of water at a time...and is insulated...there is nothing more amazing than a cool slurp of water, when the ambient temperature is above that of your body. I will drink between 2-3 gallons of water per day when working in the field, and not gain an ounce by the close of play each day!

On a more challenging and practical note. I'm sat looking at a pile of impossibly full bags. One for clothing, the rest... field gear....lots of field gear...and there's more to pick-up at our destination. I shall even be dragging my MacBookPro into the field, as I have coaxed it into talking 'PC' via Parallels (a crafty piece of software), that will allow me to run the Leica software that stitches together the digital data from the LiDAR scans. Whilst we still take brushes, spades, trenching tools, dental picks and plaster into the field, the array of digital and electronic equipment is now quite staggering....and heavy.

The bags look full, but I have that nagging doubt...I must have forgotten something?

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