Happy holidays from the Stream Team!
In Antarctica, the holidays are celebrated very differently depending on where you are, but they are always celebrated with enthusiasm. It is a Dry Valley tradition to spend Thanksgiving and Christmas at Lake Hoare. For Thanksgiving, everyone in the valley gathers at the Hoare camp and eats all the holiday favorites including turkey, stuffing, sweet potatoes, and pies. People even dress up for the occasion!
This year, the Stream Team made the traditional walk from F6 around the Canada glacier to Lake Hoare for Christmas. It even snowed at the time, which is a bit unusual for the Dry Valleys, but good for Christmas spirit! Once at the Hoare camp, we decorated sugar cookies, built a gingerbread house, and had a gift exchange.
McMurdo usually has a nice celebration for New Years called “Icestock” which is complete with live music. At Lake Hoare, New Years is a bit more low key and is likely spent at “the beach”, which is a warm sandy spot under the glacier that is perfect for counting down the seconds to a new year. It is also not uncommon to get into the costume box to help celebrate, which is full of wigs, dresses, and of course…leather pants.