Sometimes our work at the Pico Mountain Observatory is both mentally and physically challenging, but it is always rewarding. Since we arrived almost two weeks ago, the weather has been fairly uncooperative. We had a few days of warm sunshine, kindly reminding us of why we are here, “to sample the air of the marine free troposphere far away from direct emission sources”. From our previous work at this remote location, we recently published two technical papers about our observations of soot morphology and aerosol chemistry. These technical observations inform the scientific community about the effects of long-range transport on the aerosol mainly from North America.
This year’s fieldwork is now underway and just as we picked up some momentum, the weather became difficult to predict. This means, that sometimes we will not be able to do our work upon reaching the Observatory and sometimes traversing up and down the mountain is dangerous and especially so with high winds and rain. This year is particularly special, because we are hosting a guest scientist from Trento Italy, who’s planning to collect some very special mountain profile measurements by carrying several small instruments on his back. Thus, sitting in the apartment and waiting for ideal conditions is absolutely out of the question.