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Icy stairs aboard USCGC Healy

Watch Your Step!

Ice-covered stairs makes for a tricky ascent—and a necessary detour—aboard the U.S. Coast Guard icebreaker Healy on a 2011 cruise to the Western Arctic Shelfbreak. The temperature this far north can dip as low as -30 degrees Fahrenheit, temperatures at which salt water spray freezes on contact with the ship. Photographer Donglai Gong, a WHOI postdoctoral scholar studying arctic water transport, snapped the photo to remind himself not to take the harsh but beautiful conditions for granted. (Photo by Donglai Gong, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution)

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