Under the Weather on the Summit
2017-01-14 14:05:18.000 – Adam Gill, Weather Observer/IT Specialist
When living and working on the summit for a week at a time, you are bound to get sick at least once or twice a year while at the Observatory. I always hope that I will catch that cold while in the valley on my off week so I can relax and recover without having to worry about work at all. This off week I did fall ill and unfortunately it was on Tuesday, the day before heading up for this shift. Luckily the Tuesday was the worst day and I was able to relax and recover a bit so I would be able to show up and make it up the mountain for my shift.
We do have the option to miss shift change if we are feeling to bad and can get a ride up later in the week with State Park or on one of the road plowing trips we do to help keep up with the snow. I felt good enough by the morning to be able to get up because with the weather forecast it looks like the next trip up the mountain would not have been until today (Saturday) and that is a long time to leave my co-workers with all the summit duties. I did end up taking much of the day on Thursday off to rest up and recover fully.
There are other times where you are already on the summit when the cold or flu strikes. When this happens, the observers who are not sick will take most or all of that persons daily duties so they can recover faster by resting. If the illness is too bad, we can get the snow cat to come up and retrieve the person. Though due to the tight living quarters, once one person gets sick, more of the staff on the summit will get sick over the following days!
Adam Gill, Weather Observer/IT Specialist