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    Image courtesy of S.E. Walker

From: Sally Walker
Explorers Cove Field Camp, New Harbor, McMurdo Sound, Antarctica, October 25, 2008

Meet Our Ice Divers

You have not lived until you have met an Antarctic ice diver!† These are polar-adapted and highly-trained underwater explorers that can stand penetratingly cold, blood-freezing conditions below a solid ceiling of ice.†† We are honored to have four astounding ice divers on our team - (from left to right) Cecil Shin, Steve Clabuesch, Shawn Harper, and Henry Kaiser.† They not only keep our camp functioning, but they also help us plan field ops, design experimental arrays, deploy our experiments, and take exquisitely beautiful underwater video and photographs.† Henry is an amazing cinematographer and a talented Thai cook. Shawn is a scientifically-trained polar photographer with some of the biggest underwater cameras that I have seen on Earth.† Steve also takes emotively beautiful underwater photographs, and keeps the entire dive operation organized.† Cecil keeps details on the extensive dives, and makes sure our gear is ready for deployment.

It takes them a very long time it to prepare for a dive because of the cold conditions. Shawn and Henry lovingly clean and maintain their cameras and video systems for hours.† Suiting up in dry scuba suits takes almost two hours, and then the dive only lasts for approximately 30 minutes!† They all wear at least four layers of clothes, but it is all worth it when they view the underwater miracle that Antarcticaís clear water gives them. Once they return to the surface, it takes them yet another two hours just to clean and dry their equipment!† And, when they return to camp, I have never seen such ravenous creatures in my life, ready for dinner!†

About Sam Bowser's Underwater Antarctic Research

Diving Under Antarctic Ice

Shawn Harper's Underwater Photographs

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Postcards from the Field: Polar Fossil Mysteries

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