Managing Wind Tails - Michal Krzysztofowicz Photography

Michal Krzysztofowicz Photography

Managing Wind Tails


Due to predominantly easterly winds, any structure, building, parked vehicle or even a more prominent sastrugi create wind tails on the western side. These are large mounds of hard, compacted snow, deposited on the lee side of the obstacle. In addition, this part of Antarctica has an average 1.5 to 2 m of annual snow accumulation.

The Halley Modules are no exception and throughout the winter they create impressive wind tails, some of those standing higher than the deck of the link bridge. Those wind tails get in the way of vehicles and daily operations and if left alone, they could start burying things they are caused by.

Because of all of this, the wind tails need to be leveled each summer season and the vehicles used for this task are Pisten Bullies as well as the pictured Caterpillar Dozers. In the picture the D6N Dozer is working its way through the wind tail towering over the Dozer's roof and located on the lee side of the Melt Tanks.