National Geographic : 1930 Aug
THE CONQUEST OF ANTARCTICA BY AIR 177 ©N.Y.T.&St.L.P.D. "PIG WHALES" MAY BE A NEW SPECIES These comparatively small sea mammals have not yet been positively identified scientifically. They have much in common with the widely distributed pike whale, but certain points of dif ference may entitle them to a classification of their own. the instrument. Fingers stuck to metal parts, and after that operation I have seen the photographers hop about in pain, hold ing their hands under their armpits. Hardest of all were the blizzard pic tures. When the camera faced the wind, snow gathered on the lens; if turned away, eddies sucked the snow in almost as fast. We had been hearing about New York's heat wave when, on July 3, our thermom eter dropped to 64 degrees below zero. It was so cold that when a man stood outside the tunnel he could hear his breath freeze. The condensation caused a faint swishing sound like snow blown across the ice sur face by a strong wind. The corners of my room near the floor were never free from ice. KEROSENE FREEZES SOLID At home kerosene is used to keep au tomobile radiators from freezing; down there, cans left too near the entrance of the snow tunnels froze solid. Ventilators left open poured forth vapor like the ex haust of a steam engine. Cans of tobacco brought out from beneath our bunks were so frosted they might have been left out in a snowstorm. That cold spell persisted for two weeks. One mid-July day the mercury touched 71° below zero. That caused the barrier snow to contract sharply. All about us we could hear the ice snapping and cracking. Then, as large cracks occurred, the bay ice began booming like distant guns. The guy wires on the antenna posts became as taut as harp strings and the wind played odd humming tunes on them. We had to warm the candles we used under the meteorolog ical balloons before they would burn. An observation in low temperatures was made when a balloon was sent up one day and registered 70 degrees below zero. On another cold day Hanson took a trip ten miles out on the barrier and stayed 48 hours to make measurements of the Kennelly-Heaviside layer, which affects radio waves. Plans for this work had been made at the Naval Research Laboratory in Washington before we left the States. The first time Hanson started the dogs' noses froze and the trip had to be post poned. It was then 600 below.