Archive for the ‘Cold Temperatures’ Category

Spinning Yarn: Tauranga Spinners #109

Saturday, January 21st, 2012

 My flight to Tauranga came in the middle of myChristchurchvisit. I wanted to see the North and to visit the Majacraft Spinning Wheel company, present to them a report of my trip and to meet the local spinners who would be interested to hear about my Spinning inAntarctica. Majacraft supplied the Little Gem (whom I have named “Mawson”; all my 38 spinning wheels have names) for me to take toCapeDenisonand report on the effects of extreme temperatures on the workings of the mechanisms – polymer driveband, bearings and oiling, the cold on all the moving parts, its portability and its hypnotic quality.

 Hypnotic quality? Why, yes – just ask the Adelie penguin who chatted with me for about 15 minutes!

 The Spinners loved the presentation, and made a donation to the Mawson’s Huts Foundation as a thank you, and for their part in its restoration. The Tauranga group are numerous, about 25 ladies there on the day I visited, and very active and supportive of the local Spinning Wheel company. I was made to feel very welcome. Thank you, Ladies.

 

 

Spinning Yarn: #106 Ancient Pattern Unearthed – then Discarded!

Thursday, December 15th, 2011

 Well, I have decided that, as nice as this one is, it is just too big. I am not happy with it and I would not put this one up for auction.

So let’s have another look at that photo….the one showing the blue balaclava…..ok – this is going to be a replica – not a duplicate – and that makes the difference. 

In 2 days of knitting and I had just enough Antarctic Spun yarn to finish the smaller size! Praise God!

 (I suppose I could have gone back this year to do more…..)

 

Spinning Yarn: Not Baggy Green at all! #105

Saturday, November 26th, 2011

The practice Balaclava is indicative of the original garment, yet with plenty of room for a helmet underneath! and Earmuffs, and a scarf, and goggles…. Not doubt VERY warm and deserving of being warn, yet who has a head big enough for this particular one?  Time to re-visit the pattern! …and Sir Douglas would approve of that too!

Mawson looks out in approval….#104

Saturday, November 26th, 2011

Before attempting the balacava with the actual Antarctic  Yarn,  I have better try a practice pattern, eh? I’ve nutted out the pattern using similar yarn, that we spunl Melbourne Show.  Using the correct needles and the bulky white yarn, I began the 7×7 rib, to see how it would turn out. As you can see, Sir Douglas is pleased….

Now on to the real thing…..

…And the Winner is…..#103

Wednesday, November 2nd, 2011

The Overall winner of the Photo competition  is JOANNE BAILEY of Rowville, Victoria, Australia. I knitted and crocheted a hat and matching scarf,  using the “Antarctic Sunrise” Yarn (see post #    ). Not only did it fit perfectly, but she was thrilled with  the colours and standard of the work! Joanne will be wearing this with pride, physical proof of her ability to use a camera, something that she has been very interested in for a long time. ”

Travelling around gives you a good perspective  and lots of subject matter”, she says!

Exactly Right! 

Well done, Joanne!

Spinning Yarn: Majacraft MajaSponsor! #101

Monday, August 15th, 2011

The plan to take my spinning wheel to Antarctica, (fuelled by a dare from my brother), required a bit of research into the most convenient wheel to take. I had been looking at taking a wheel that was compact and very portable, but also one with endurance which was friendly to use, and my research led me to Majacraft, a New Zealand based company in the North Island – at Tauranga. When Glenis and Owen Poad of Majacraft heard about my trip to Antarctica, they wanted to be part of it, and so offered me the Little Gem.

 Made of New Zealand “Rimu” wood, each piece matched for colour and growth ring pattern, it is also modern is size and shape. It is an elegant wheel, by any standards. The polymer drivebands are guaranteed to a temperature of minus 30 for 20 minutes, which was ideal for me at my destination. Add to that the functional and compact carry bag, and it is a wheel for the most discerning Antarctic traveller!

Spinning Yarn: More Heart of the Great Alone #100

Wednesday, August 10th, 2011

 Herbert Ponting was Scott’s photographer, equally skilled with an artistic eye and plenty of film! The shots he took are stunning and evoked the same surprising emotional response– Amazement! Incredulity! Recognition!  I was stunned at how much the ice had changed, yet not changed.

 So many penguin photos – gosh, I took a few of those, myself!! – and so many seal shots, but also the artistic angles. There were the obligatory “happy snaps” and the documentary shots too. Would anyone know or believe that men even went down to Antarctica, had these pictures not been taken? And would anyone have understood the immensity, or the scale, or the proportions of the ice, or seen the beauty of Nature at her most extreme?

 We owe these men, Hurley and Ponting, the utmost respect and admiration, and we owe the expeditioners more of the same.

Spinning Yarn: How Far toChristchurch? #95

Friday, July 8th, 2011

Leaving the ship was not a complicated as it could have been. We said all our passenger goodbyes the night before and had only to wait for our bags to be put on the dock. Some passengers had hotel reservations for Dunedin, some had planes to catch, others had more local sightseeing to do…And me? Well I needed to hire a car – one way —to Christchurch.

The car rental company I spoke to before I left Melbourne told me to call them when I arrived in Dunedin – and I did – but they were not open for the public holiday! Nor were they available the next day, so I boarded Orion without having booked a vehicle. Upon our return, a Saturday morning, I called again. They were open this time, but sorry, they do not do one way trips. (They could have told me that in Melbourne!) Obviously, I was not happy, but I was not worried, either. …..Faith…..

 Out on the wharf, the car rental companies and taxis waited for us to farewell the Expedition Team, lined up to wave us off and give us our parting gift of a  souvenir photographs CD. The Lady from the local rental company very kindly drove me to the tourist bureau, where another learned lady located the rental car I was to have – right in town! Within 40 minutes of leaving Orion, I was back on the road and away on the next leg of my adventure – A drive up the East Coast of South Island.

 Maybe I should have asked for a map…..Nah…..

Spinning Yarn: Back on Board, Never Bored! #87

Friday, June 10th, 2011

Returning to the ship, we made sure to walk through the bucket of anti-germ wash.

With all those penguins, and Sea Elephants and seals, it would be so easy to step in something unpleasant, unwittingly bringing it aboard. That would never do!

 Back in the rooms, we removed the lifejackets and the boots and the coats, hats, mittens and cameras, changing into something more comfortable for the afternoon tea that awaited us. Yes, it was time to eat yet again! And you know – you really build up an appetite with all this fresh air and walking, so it was most welcome (as well as delicious) especially the hot drinks.

 We awaited the day’s briefing….

Spinning Yarn: I am surprized #84

Tuesday, May 31st, 2011

On Macquarie Island, they spin! I was so pleased to see it. I expected to be able to see the rabbit fur being spun, or the baling twine that washes up on the beach to be collected enough to be spun, or the long grass that grows on the far side to be dried and spun, but no…..It was much simpler than that…..

 Check it out…..

Hehehehehehe