Back to the Deep Freeze

A C-17 from JB Lewis-McChord, Wash., launched aerial resupply activities for the 2012-13 season of Operation Deep Freeze, the US military’s mission providing logistical support to US scientific researchers in Antarctica. Active Duty and Reserve airmen of McChord’s 62nd Airlift Wing and Air Force Reserve Command’s 445th AW deployed with the airlifter to the staging base at Christchurch, New Zealand, on Sept. 29, according to McChord officials. Back in August, a McChord C-17 flew six pre-season missions to the barren continent. McChord C-17s and ski-equipped LC-130 “Skibirds” from the New York Air National Guard’s 109th AW in Scotia form the air component of Joint Task Force-Support Forces Antarctica, which moves supplies by air and sea to US research stations on the continent. LC-130 flights ferrying supplies from McMurdo Station, Antarctica, deep inland to the South Pole are slated to begin on Oct. 18, according to the task force’s Sept 26 release. (See also Oct. 1 Christchurch report by SSgt. Sean Tobin)