|Expedition 98, June 19-22|
|After setting up our base camp we proceeded to the crash site
despite the very dense fog (visibility 50-75 ft). We hiked very slowly using detailed aerial photographs and a
compass as a guide. We had to navigate by using boulders and small ponds that were visible on our aerial photographs.
As you can see from the images below what the visibility was like on that day. One of the observations we all experienced
was our inability to judge the size or distance of objects. The terrain was such that a boulder that appeared to
be 2 feet high would actually be 7 ft tall. There were no references such as trees to gauge the size or distance
of objects. I remember peering through the fog when I saw a pond which I thought was about 75 ft across, when in
reality it was only 10 ft across.
Thunderstorms and heavy rain prevented us from reaching the site.
We woke up to be pleasantly surprised to find the fog and the rain finally lifted and visibility was great. Once at the site we were able to get down to work. We were able to determine his final approach path and we also wanted to estimate the speed Smith would have traveled while walking across the barrens. We also placed a plaque at the exact spot where he stepped out of his aircraft in 1939.
Click on the picture for a larger image.
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