International Incoherent Scatter Radar Workshop in Kangerlussuaq, Greenland. The US/Canadian contingent includes nearly 30 students, 7 instructors/staff, and National Science Foundation sponsors. With such a unusual group, we took a special route to get here, courtesy of the US NY State 109th Air National Guard. The school's program staff arranged for a dedicated flight from Scotia, NY (about 12 miles west of Albany in upstate NY) on a military C-130 aircraft. Our flight was listed as "Kelly Ville - 50" for our eventual destination and the number of passengers. The National Guard are experienced Arctic/Antarctic fliers who make regular trips to both poles, and Greenland has been part of their mission for decades. We were lucky enough to hitch a ride so to speak.
On this flight, you don't want to pack much of a carry-on, as you will have to suffer with it under your feet or poking into your back for the 6+ hour flight. (The C-130 has propellers which fly slower than a jet, but its four engines make it very reliable.) Given that our knees were nearly touching, there wasn't much of a center aisle as you can see in the photos, and so walking around in the aircraft required a great deal of care and maneuvering to avoid stepping on your fellow traveller.
Our Guard airmen made the flight a smooth one, and students and staff alike were thrilled to begin their 'radar week' in a memorable fashion.
Text and photos: Phil Erickson.