“It does get under your skin. It’s an amazing and dynamic working environment down there with so many challenges,” Dave said.
“I’ve always wanted to come back to Antarctica, so it was just a case of when.”
He returns to the Australian Antarctic Division (AAD) after a thirty year career in the Australian Army, which included non-military work with the AAD.
Passionate about photography, Dave left the Defence Force in 2019 to start his own photography business but changed his plans due to the pandemic.
He served a year with the Australian Border Force but felt drawn back to the frozen continent and the people who work there.
“I think what I’ve missed the most is working with people from such diverse backgrounds, professions and or age groups. And seeing those people come together to work on common or unified goals,” he said.
He arrives at Casey with a team of summering and wintering expeditioners for a historic moment – the delivery of traverse cargo for the Million Year Ice Core project.
“The Million Year Ice Core, coupled with the deep traverse project, coupled with the deep field camp we’re hoping to establish - just getting that into station is a huge logistical challenge, probably far surpassing anything that the AAD has attempted before,” he said.
“It’s going to be an exceptionally busy summer, but that’s why we’re here. We’re really keen to value add and make a difference.”
Luckily, his cameras and lenses won’t be wasted.
“Antarctica is an amazing place. It’s the wild frontier. Unpredictable. They call it the A-factor. But it really is an amazing place.”