During, before, and after the field course, Polaris students and faculty share their thoughts through journal entries.

© Chris Linder

Blog Posts

  • All Well in Cherskiy

    The Polaris Project 2014 Expedition in now underway! Everyone made it to Cherskiy without incident and all are now settling in to their new routine.
  • Many firsts

    After I finished reading the blogs I leaned back and looked at the map of Russia on the wall behind my desk. That map has been my lifeline while coordinating this trip. It is marked with post-its of flight dates and departure and arrival times of each leg of travel, along with the time differences; Moscow +8, Yakutsk +14 and Cherskiy +16.
  • Virtual Siberia vs. Reality

    I’ve been to Siberia hundreds of times, maybe even thousands. Sometimes making several trips in the very same day.  I’ve seen its seasons, good weather, bad weather, the mountains and valleys, rivers, ponds, lakes, and wetlands. I’ve visited each of the great Arctic rivers of Siberia, wondered at permafrost features, and even explored forest fire burn scars.
  • East Bound and Down

    Greetings from Внуkово! The first wave of Polaris 2014 (Aaron, Craig, Erika, Heather, Homero, Mike, Sam, and Seth) is indeed East Bound and Down (yes, this is a Smokey and the Bandit reference).
  • Wonder and Fear

    Mammoths started it all. Growing up I became infatuated with monsters of the ice age reading with awe and terror of past geological epochs. Giant sloths, sabre tooth cats and mastodons satisfied my fantastical imagination, while providing tangibility I couldn’t find in pure fantasy.
  • Extending the Senses

    The path that led me to apply to the Polaris Project was less focused on science and more focused on the process behind science, the data collection, measurements, and methods of analysis used to investigate natural phenomena. I’ve spent the past few months designing a reliable, low-cost circuit to record environmental information in Siberia.
  • From Salt Marsh to Siberia

    I was the kid on the field trip who was off playing with a sea creature, wondering where it came from, how it was going to get back and why it behaved the way it did, while the rest of the group was eating their lunch on shore.
  • From the Caribbean to the Arctic…Wait, whaaat?

    I am from the tropics, and in my case since I was a kid, all my education in science has been mainly about the Tropical Environment. It is a biome that I am very used to, scientifically speaking. So…why do I want to go to the arctic tundra?
  • Hello from the Land of Long Winters

    My background is in wildlife diseases. So why do I have interest in climate change?
  • Change for the Best

    For me, being part of The Polaris Project is a huge deal. I am Mexican-American therefore I grew up in a culture where families are very close.
  • Beneath My Feet

    I think there is something special about hiking through a canyon and not only being able to appreciate the beauty of the rushing river and intensely sloped rock walls, but also being able to understand how such a striking landscape can arise. Siberia and the tundra are drastically different from the Rockies, and I am looking forward to exploring foreign landscapes and to asking new questions- striving to understand the processes beneath my feet.
  • Impacts of Reaching Out in Texas

    Recently I participated in an outreach event with Dr. Heather Alexander, Aaron White and Erika Ramos. Our goal was to expose South Texas high school students to the world of ecology with a focus on the Arctic and the impacts climate warming can have on this environment. We talked about research currently being conducted as well as the work we are planning on doing this summer in Chersky.
  • Understanding the Invisible

    I do not know what I will want to investigate when I arrive in Siberia. I have been told by students that have gone in the past that that is ok--my ideas will change when I stand on the uneven ground and experience the place for the first time. But I am excited that, in preparation for the trip, I have been able to understand my own thinking better, and I look forward to trying to understand something invisible.
  • Communicating Arctic Science, from a science meeting to a high school classroom

    Last week (May 18-23) marked the first annual Association for the Sciences of Limnology and Oceanography’s Joint Aquatic Sciences Meeting (JASM). While the Polaris showing at the JASM wasn’t quite as impressive as AGU, a solid group of Polaris students and related researchers made excellent presentations, including the entire (three member!) Carbon Bomb team: Rob Spencer, Paul Mann, and myself.…
  • Congratulations to Polaris Participants and Alumni!

    Polaris Project participants continue to achieve scientific successes through publications, presentations at national meetings, and awards and fellowships.
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