Coming from the hills of Pennsylvania, this area seems baren - especially in the winter. These trees are short and dark - Juniper's I believe. In fact, we were looking for wildlife and kept imagining trees were buffalo. Things are spread out, and there's a lot of exposed ground and rock. I love the rich color of the land.
Today, the focus was preparing to go underground and, while waiting, working on what one can from the road. The one thing I've learned through the years, is to expect the unexpected. There may be a delay this time that could mean getting little video but we should still get the photos needed. In that case, my primary task will be lighting.
Lighting is a major job underground. We use battery powered fluorescent lights. The lights are in watertight housings which also protects them from the dust. We'll carry in 10 batteries which weigh about 30 lbs each and will last 3 hours on low setting or 6 hours on high. Between the lights, the batteries, the light stands and tripods, we'll fill up the back of a jeep. At this mine, we'll drive in Jeep Wranglers. It's a big mine, as most are in the west, with a 12 foot seam. It's a Trona mine and unlike coal, it's a very light colored material so it will be much easier to light.
This evening we'll meet with the project manager and learn if we go in tomorrow or have another day to wait.