Arctic Ocean Glaciological Programme
The Arctic Ocean work was curtailed owing to three unforeseen factors. The removal of 0. W. N. Shepard after the Antarctic crossing, a polar base fire which destroyed all scientific equipment including the SPRI seismometer and the sinking of a skidoo and sledge load including two weeks’ worth of snow accumulation and ice topographical records. Nonetheless three of the original six programmes were carried out.
- Pollen Sampling for Polar Continental Shelf Project
At six widely spaced sites surface samples were collected, bagged and labelled. They were subsequently taken from Alert to Toronto for analysis by influx representative of the Ellesmere-Pole part of the High Arctic which were required to tie in with collections made simultaneously from ten ice caps in the High Arctic and from Northern Greenland and from FRAM III (an icefloe some 2 degrees north of Spitsbergen).
- Topographical Log of Arctic Ocean Traverse
Details of surface topography were carefully logged on a daily basis. Remarks concentrated on open water leads, extent and composition of ridges, percentage of rubble cover, details and direction of fracturing and extent and age of floes. Completed logs were sent to both SPRI and PCSP for their annual records of Arctic Ocean behavioural patterns.
- Snow Accumulation and Melt Record
At each camp site from Cape Columbia Pole/82° North, 01°30’ East, snow depth average over a 20 square metre patch was recorded in cm. During the period June August 1982 daily melt records were kept on a single ice floe between 86°N and 82°N. All records were sent to SPRI and PCSP for analysis.
Note: Throughout the journey Alert/N. Pole 82°00’N, 01°30’E meteorological synopses by C. R. Burton were sent daily to the WMO via the expedition’s forward base.