Antarctic Cold Desert, no vegetation observed at the site but small moss patches near ephemeral streams
The landform is a last glaciation retreat surface forming a narrow coastal plain; the till mantle is patchy and generally thin with scattered outcrops of local bedrock, marble, granodiorite, gneiss and dolerite; weathering evidence suggests that the landform is pre-Quaternary having been over run by ice advances on previous occasions; postglacial; site modification is unlikely.
Patchy till cover over granodiorite/gneiss bedrock; ice content in upper permafrost varies from around 30-140%.
Coastal Till plain. Local relief (m) A generally smooth surface with broad surface undulation to local rock outcrop about 15 m above site.
This site is one of three established in January 1999 in the McMurdo Sound/Dry Valley region of Antarctica. The equipment installed included soil temperature sensors, humidity sensors and a 1.2 m temperature cable. Above ground measurements include solar radiation, air temperature, wind speed and direction. The site is currently not set up to automatically transmit data which will need to be downloaded annually. Instrumentation was provided by USDA (John Kimble and Ron Paetzold).
Because of the way in which Antarctic programmes are set up and funded, secure and long term arrangements need to be put in place to ensure that data from sites such as this can continue to be gathered for effective permafrost monitoring.