Dark Snow Project: Why We are Here

June 22, 2014

The Dark Snow camp on the Greenland sheet is now in place. I’ve gotten several messages via satellite phone from Dr. Jason Box, including this one:

We have had a pretty decent time so far. We selected a site with both snow and bare ice. It’s 6 nautical miles closer to the airport and thus will save multiples of 12 nautical miles on our flying cost. The down side is that it’s not beside a Danish climate station that will need to be visited 1 August.

We are running off solar most of the time. I’m quite proud of our solar.

We witnessed two amazing sites I’ve not seen here in my years. 1.) a water fountain on the horizon, spouting to 100 feet above the surface, think it is either a lot of water trying to fall down a small moulin cavitating or a river on the ice sheet taking a violent turn. The spout lasted at least 18 hours! 2.) a slush flow of ~15 feet wide scouring a path in slush as a stream widened. I had been worried about such low slope wet snow avalanches being a threat to the camp. This happened some 150 feet from the camp which is at least 6 feet above the level this happened so no real danger by selecting the camp on a high point.

Dr. Box will be back in Copenhagen in a week, and I’ll return to the ice with him later.


Video above will be the last full Dark Snow video update before I head to Greenland.  I’ll probably keep posting snippets as we get them, perhaps when Dr. Box gets back in town. Our most  “like to have” fundable, rentable gizmo would be something to help us communicate by internet from the ice.   I had a conversation last week with a well connected media veteran who might be able to help with the communications end if we have a good connection.

9 Responses to “Dark Snow Project: Why We are Here”

  1. omnologos Says:

    Gmpcs-us.com has BGAN rentals including the Thrane Explorer 300 at $290/month (to which one has to add an Inmarsat plan, I suspect)

  2. redskylite Says:

    Astonishing amount of soot and black carbon reported on Mt Everest too: –


  3. “We are running off solar most of the time. I’m quite proud of our solar.”

    Most people think of solar as something that works best in deserts or the sunny tropics. While that’s true overall (on a year-round basis), you can get excellent results with solar during the arctic and antarctic summers, when you’ve got 24-hour sunlight. Of course, in winter you wouldn’t get anything, and with solar hot water you’d better have the pipes drained.

    I visited a female friend of mine in Wasilla, Alaska, about 10 years ago. No, it wasn’t Sarah Palin. Anyway, she has a cabin, with a solar hot water heater. Was great in August when I was there. Of course, it “hibernates” in winter, when my friend burns through a ton of heating oil and firewood.

  4. redskylite Says:

    Support The Dark Snow Project by Dr Jeff Masters :-


  5. rayduray Says:

    New, cited at NASA’s Earth Observatory, introducing the Randolph Glacier Inventory:


    In brief:

    “Many of the world’s coastal cities and populations are vulnerable to rising sea levels, but just how vulnerable is a question scientists are trying to answer. Sea levels are rising because water expands when it warms up, but also because ice has been melting. The biggest challenge in figuring out how much ice melt will cause sea levels to rise is the lack of information about how much ice glaciers currently hold, says the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). The recently published Randolph Glacier Inventory is the first global catalog of glaciers, and it was developed to help IPCC scientists improve estimates of sea level rise.”

  6. rayduray Says:

    Dr. Jeff Masters at Weather Underground:

    Headline: “The Heat is on in Greenland: Support the Dark Snow Project”


Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: