Palmer Station

Palmer Station May 2015
Palmer Station as seen from just offshore...9 May Julian Race, from the USAP photo library (link to full size original).

22 December...summer is well underway, and perhaps the biggest news is that the second of the two new rigid hull inflatable boats showed up in October. Both of them are already getting lots of use.

21 September 2017...a few updates--a quiet and successful winter season at Palmer is almost over. The Laurence M. Gould had a few significant delays in recent months...a couple caused by weather, and a longer 2-week delay in July due to some extra work in drydock. Still, the vessel is on schedule for its next cruise to Palmer, scheduled to arrive on 6 October to relieve the winterover crew.

A bit of art news...the next Artists and Writers visit to the station will be Shaun O'Boyle, who'll arrive on the next ship visit at the end of October for a 3-week stay (he'll be living on board the vessel). Here's his blog post about the trip--he previously spent 7 weeks at McMurdo in 2015, and here's a page of his McM photos.

25 March 2017...I had a Denver meetup with 2017 WSM Ken Keenan and many of the 2017 winterovers, after they finished fire school and were heading off to OSAR training in Page, AZ. As I write this, the group had just departed from Punta Arenas on the Laurence M. Gould en route to Palmer Station.

As for the R/V Hero...sadly, in March of 2017 it sank at its dock along the estuary of the Palix River in Bay Center, Washington. The most recent updates... as oil spill mitigation has been continuing.

The 1999 and 2000 winters saw some major renovations of both the biolab main floor and GWR, including a new exterior back stairway on GWR, moving medical and other offices from Biolab to GWR, as well as moving the fire tank outside, to make more room inside Biolab for beakers or whatever. And the 2002 winter saw the massive complete reconstruction of the ground floor of Biolab, including all new labs, HVAC system and boiler, and consolidation (and firewalls/safety upgrades) of the mechanical spaces to make a science instrument lab in the old mechanical room. I do have a collection of photos from these renovations that I hope to put up someday.

More recently, after the 2005 winter construction of T6, things have been a bit quieter. The station science sitreps to date are published here by the LTER people, nowadays with a new look (in MS Word or pdf formats, with photos). In January 2004, the glacier behind Old Palmer between Arthur Harbor and Loudwater Cove, turning the area into Norsel Island, perhaps, but in 2007 it was named Amsler Island.

Check out the USAP webcam installed in March 2010 on one of the antenna towers near the station. It was augmented in 2012-13 with a remote penguin camera on Torgersen Island; this camera is operational during the summer breeding season.

And don't miss Dave Gallas' incredible blow-by-blow eyewitness account of the 1989 Bahia episode!

What else is here:

Old Palmer
A look at the original station
of Old Palmer, January/February 1965
...of the present station in March, 1968
The Palmer timelines
from, well, 1820 to the present with a few gaps still being worked on...
Palmer Views
Historical miscellany from the old and new days, including a look at those w/o pictures in the GWR stairwell.
Recommended links
pertaining to Palmer and the Antarctic Peninsula updated March 2017
That research vessel Hero
...her history from the 1967 keel laying...up to...the 2017 keel laying on the bottom of the Palix River estuary
About these pages...
and a dedication
Contact Bill Spindler... me!
Updated 22 December 2017
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