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Ellen McCallie's Diary

Photo: the glacierDay 4: Rest Day

Mike Bullivant and I went with Martin, one of the directors, and Derek and John, cameraman and soundman respectively, to learn to pan gold. There is a technique to it, so we better learn before program 1, day 1. Kevin Hill, the co-owner of the rights to the land, gave us a great tour and practicum. This is very hard, cold work.

Photo: forestThe tree ferns' "forest" on his property is luxurious. I don't know if this means hardwood or conifers were cut down from amongst them for building material, or if it's just a tree fern canopy. In any case, it is so moist that seeds of all sorts of plants have logged and germinated in the stems of the tree ferns. Plants are dripping off of plants; Vines are strangling their hosts and becoming "trees" themselves. It reminds me of a really wet version of the Atlantic rainforest outside of Rio de Janeiro. Either that or Jurassic Park and the dinosaurs.

That afternoon I read and read and read. (I had also woken up at 5 am that morning and read.) Basically, once I am on site and get a look at the surroundings, I need to read and read to get a better feel for what is going on. This is a job after all.

I spend the evening looking at stars from the Southern Hemisphere perspective. Like geology, this is my other diversion for this excursion thanks to Uncle Spencer and Mike Malopeski.

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Photo: Ellen McCallie
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