Commander Report – February 17th

Crew 175 Commander Report 17Feb2017

Dear Earth,

Sol 5: back to normal after yesterday’s festivities.

Mouâdh, Victoria, Simon and I went on EVA this morning to install the
seismometer in the hole we dug close to the Main Road, South of the
Hab. We had also planned to deploy the balloon for the second time,
but the wind was too strong. The exploration we did afterward led us
to the top of the Ridge, where we discovered a stunning panorama: in
front of us the red plain enclosed in mud hills, behind us the
colossal mesas of Skyline Ridge. Our hike offered us an unusual sight
on the MDRS from above. We should definitely come back up here on a
later EVA!

A very strong wind rose after lunch, blowing away all the outside
stuff that was not attached (typically: the unused cardboard we stored
yesterday). In order to avoid further mess and to take a look at the
potential damages around the station, Louis Maller and Xavier went out
for a short EVA. In the end, no hurt was noted on the different
facilities, but Louis and Xavier preventively fixed a water tank on
the rear of a rover. We were glad to see that our upgrade on the
tunnel stood still (we call it “The Wall”). This storm reminded us of
the non-realistic beginning of Andy Weir’s novel “The Martian”, with a
minor difference though: the terrestrial wind is strong enough to blow
away heavier things than sand… So better stay aware, even if this
situation is totally impossible under Mars thin atmosphere.

Otherwise, there is nothing to worry about. The crew stays in a good
mood, science goes on and we have plenty of food left (at least for
the moment).

Ad Astra!