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Assembling the Crew and Gear

BARROW, ALASKA– The last few weeks have gone by very quickly. The local high school students for the crew have been chosen, and the out-of town crew members have started arriving.

The first to arrive were Brittany Osland and Shelia Oelrich, two volunteers who are good friends. They are originally from Soldotna, Alaska, although Britt is now based in Portland, Oregon. Neither of them are archaeologists, but they wanted to see Barrow, learn something about the people and the place, and try their hands at some archaeology. They came up on May 17th, and have been a huge help with the pre-season inventorying, organizing, and general straightening-up of field gear and the lab prior to the main season. They are old enough to drive the BASC truck assigned to the project, so can do supply purchases as well.

Heading out to the Nuvuk dig site in the BASC truck.

In addition, we currently have Paddy Colligan, who just finished an M.A. at Hunter College; Krysta Terry from Ontario, Canada, who just graduated from the University of Western Ontario and is planning to go on to graduate school; Dave Grant, who is working on a Masters at San Jose State in California (although he’s originally from Ontario too); Andrew Zipkin, who is an undergraduate at Cornell University; and Tony Krus, who just graduated from Hampshire College and will be going on to graduate school in the fall. On June 9th, Nadia Jackinsky-Horrell, a grad student at the University of Washington, will arrive to join us.

The BASC logistics staff took all the 4-wheelers (ATVs) out of winter storage and reassembled them. They have to take the windshields and shocks off to make them all fit into the limited indoor “warm” storage. Gear has been taken out, batteries have been charged, and software has been updated and loaded on to the ruggedized laptops for the season. The shovels, Pelican cases and so forth that we ordered are finally starting to arrive. Freight can be slow in the Arctic.

Our transit setup, complete with 4-wheeler, tripod, laptop, backpack, and assorted cases.

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