Thursday 19th September 2013, morning.
Here we are again, in the Arctic for the final MAMM field campaign. Well, I’m actually not quite in the Arctic yet, as I’m currently on a train that has just departed from Boden, which is at about 65.5N, just half a degree south of the Arctic Circle.
The plan for this September campaign is to measure methane at this time of year, so see how it differs from the warmer months of July and August. It’s not that cold in the wetlands yet (still in double figures during the day, and nowhere near freezing at night) so we may still see evidence of wetlands emissions.
The ARA is currently in the air, on its transit flight from the UK over to Kiruna. My train was supposed to be getting in to Kiruna around the same time as the aircraft, so I could have been there for the debrief and brief for this afternoon’s flight. Alas, the UK railways are not the only ones that have delays! A broken down train blocking the rails meant that my sleeper train departed 1h45 late. We managed to makeup some time, and the connecting train from Boden to Kiruna waited for the delayed sleeper, but I will still be too late for the briefing unless they too are delayed. I wasn’t going to fly this afternoon, so it’s not too much of a problem; I’ll just have to catch up with what’s going on when I do arrive.
And I must say, I’m quite glad (and my colleagues certainly will be glad) that I can check in to the hotel and have a quick shower before going to the airport, as I’ve been on the road for over 24 hours now…
Dr Michelle Cain, University of Cambridge