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Deep Core Geology Station 1 near Steno Crater


Traverse to Station 1

Corrected Transcript and Commentary Copyright © 1995 by Eric M. Jones.
All rights reserved.
Scan credits in the Image Library
Audio clips by Dave Shaffer.
Last revised 4 August 2017.


[They are both now at the back of the Rover. They are about to prepare for the geology traverse. Details of the Geo Prep are on LMP-26 and CDR-24.]
MP3 Audio Clip starting at 121:26:11 ( 20 min 14 sec )

121:26:28 Cernan: (Reviewing checklist page CDR-21, which he has completed) Okay, "lay cores in..." (Finding the right page) Okay...

121:26:29 Schmitt: Can you put that in that sampler tool bag, there?

121:26:32 Cernan: Yes, sir. (Pause) We're configuring for geology now, Bob.

121:26:38 Parker: Okay, copy that.

121:26:44 Schmitt: Bob, right now, (sample bag) 10 Echo is in my suit pocket, I hope.

121:26:50 Parker: Okay.

[They each have a pocket on their right shin and on their left thigh.]
121:26:54 Cernan: Okay. (Reading CDR-24) "Mount 20-bag dispenser (from) SCB-1." Let me get at them.

121:26:57 Schmitt: I've got mine on.

[The sample bags come in bundles of twenty which are hung from hooks at the bottom of the 70-mm cameras. That way, the bags were always in easy reach. The sample bags have been stowed in Sample Collection Bag (SCB) number one. The SCBs are much larger bags made of laminated Teflon cloth and are each 42 cm high, 22 cm wide, and 15 cm deep. Each of the astronauts will wear one on his PLSS. After a sample is sealed in one of the small, clear Teflon bags, they will put it in one or the other of the SCBs. Gene swings the gate closed; from the perspective of the TV camera, the top of it is about level with the top of his helmet.]
121:26:59 Cernan: Okay. (Pause) Oh! ("Rats!") This probably goes under the seat, doesn't it? (Pause) Get the camera...(I can't find) where the devil mine is? Excuse me. Oh, I see the gnomon!
[Gene goes to his seat, carrying a packet of sample bags. The gnomon is on his seat.]
121:27:29 Schmitt: I put it there so I wouldn't forget it.

[The fact that both CDR-24 and LMP-26 have handwritten notes about the gnomon suggests that Jack forgot it more than once during training.]
121:27:31 Cernan: (Laughs) Okay. I tell you, dexterity is the key. Look at those cover gloves.
[The cover gloves are dark brown from the impregnating dust. To prepare the gnomon for stowage, Gene grasps the legs which, rather like umbrella stays, collapse onto the central axis. He then puts the gnomon in its stowage sheath behind his seat.]
121:27:45 Schmitt: I guess we can take those off. I don't know whether we ought to or not.
[Cernan - "The cover gloves had fingers that were cut out, rather like a golf glove. They went over the regular glove and covered the palms. Because of all of the drilling and such, we just wanted to put a little more protection on our regular gloves. We were only going to use them for the first EVA, because that's where all the manual labor was; the rest was all traverse work. You've seen how hard we worked with those things up to this point; and they were just ripped up and torn up and really battered. Most of the damage was a result of abrasion."]
121:27:47 Cernan: I'm going to leave mine on for a while. I changed my mind. I want to look at my gloves before I take them off. (Pause)
[Gene has decided not to discard the cover gloves until, once back in the LM, he's had a chance to examine his suit gloves for wear. Jack is at his own seat, fiddling with his camera.]
121:28:03 Cernan: (Consulting CDR-24) Okay, where are we? You got your camera, obviously. This is my camera. I'll get the bag dispenser on it. (Pause) It's not a bad day's start. Bob, is the ALSEP working good?

121:28:16 Parker: The last we heard, it was working great, guys. We'll check again, though.

121:28:22 Cernan: Okay. (Reading) You got your camera. My camera is in the floor pan. Cap dispenser (from) SCB-1 to Gate. Let me get that.

[Gene is taking a core cap dispenser from SCB-1 - in which the sample bags had also been stored - and will put the dispenser in a storage slot on the gate. These are caps for short core tubes - called "drive tubes" - which they will hammer into the ground at several of the geology stops.]
Video Clip ( 3 min 38 sec 0.9 RealVideo clip or 36 Mb MPEG )

121:28:30 Cernan: Jack?

121:28:31 Schmitt: Yeah?

121:28:32 Cernan: You haven't been on the Rover yet. It's real easy; but it's also very easy to kick dust all over those battery covers, so don't even get on it until I put those battery covers down.

121:28:40 Schmitt: Yeah. Hey, I guess we ought to press on as if we're going to Station 1.

121:28:45 Cernan: Yeah, you've got to walk back to the LM anyway (as per LMP-27). We got to...

121:28:49 Parker: Roger. Guys, we are going to play it per the checklist. Jack will carry the things (the deep core sections) back. Gene will get the thing (meaning the Rover Navigation system) aligned (as per CDR-25). We'll go out to the SEP site. And then we'll press on from there down to Steno. Over.

[Jack removes his camera from the bracket on his chest and stows it under his seat.]
121:29:03 Cernan: Okay, very good.

121:29:06 Parker: And right now...

121:29:08 Cernan: Okay. ( Reading CDR-24 ) "Stow (rammer and hammer on) LMP". (To Jack) You want to come over here and I'll stow your PLSS?

[That is, Gene will put equipment on Jack's PLSS.]
121:29:11 Parker: Go ahead. Never mind.

121:29:13 Schmitt: Yeah. (Pause)

[Jack goes to the gate.]
121:29:19 Schmitt: My camera's under my seat.

121:29:22 Cernan: Okay, you can turn around.

[Gene starts working on the left side of Jack's PLSS. Training photo 72-H-1226 shows Gene securing the rammer.]
121:29:27 Cernan: Oh, man! (Laughs) What have you been in? Hallelujah. (Pause) I'll keep the hammer, I'll give you this. Can you reach the rammer? It's right in front of you. On the...

121:29:47 Schmitt: Oh, yeah.

[CDR-24 calls for Gene to mount both the hammer and the rammer on Jack's PLSS, but he has decided to keep the hammer handy in his shin pocket. The rammer is a short, thin rod used to seat plugs in the drive tubes.]
121:29:49 Cernan: I haven't got that cap in, yet. There it is. Okay, the caps are in.
[Jack hands the rammer to Gene.]
121:29:53 Schmitt: If we ever come out here again, I want to get your hammer and get a sample...(garbled under Bob).
[Jack is probably thinking about getting a sample of one of the boulders. Only Gene's camera is loaded with color film. See the discussion following 120:54:26.]
121:29:53 Parker: Jack, you might give us a frame count on Hotel.

121:30:00 Schmitt: Okay, Bob.

121:30:03 Parker: And we're going to hand over stations. You might get a dropout momentarily.

[Because the Earth turns under the Moon in a little more than 24 hours, no one tracking station can keep continuous contact with the crew. There are three principle tracking stations - Goldstone, California, Madrid, Spain, and Honeysuckle Creek, Australia - which swap every eight hours or so. At this moment - about 10:23 p.m. Central Standard Time, December 11, 1972 - the Moon is about to set at Goldstone and the handover is to Honeysuckle.]

[A Starry Night view of Earth ( 0423 GMT 12 December ) shows that Australia has rotated into view. The Moon rose at Honeysuckle about 2 hours ago.]

[Schmitt - "Usually we wouldn't have noticed a handover. The one we did notice came right at lift-off from the Moon when they didn't get the handover done right away and we got a lot of static on the comm. They could hear us but we couldn't hear them."]

[As is discussed at 188:01:28, the initial comm loss at launch was actually due to the LM engine plume and, unfortunately, the operators at Goldstone waited far longer than was necessary to re-acquire the spacecraft.]

121:30:04 Schmitt: (Responding to Bob's frame count request) Yeah, it (meaning the camera)'s under the seat right now.

121:30:09 Cernan: Okay. Rammer. I got the hammer. Turn around. I'll give you a SCB-2.

121:30:15 Schmitt: Okay.

[Jack turns 180 degrees so that Gene can mount SCB-2 on the right side of his PLSS. This will put the SCB outboard when Jack is seated on the Rover. The spare SCBs are stowed, folded and strapped, on the rear-facing surface of the geopallet, inside the gate.]
121:30:19 Cernan: Okay.
[Gene notices the TV pointed at them.]
121:30:22 Cernan: Now, guess who's watching to see how these hooks are going to work? (Pause) Oh, man. Like a charm, so far. Oh, except your doggone harness is off, too, Jack.

121:30:35 Schmitt: Is it?

121:30:36 Cernan: Yeah.

[As a result of problems experienced with John Young's SCB during Apollo 16, the attachment system was re-designed. At various times during Apollo 17, one or the other of the SCBs will come loose, an indication that the re-design was not adequate.]
121:30:37 Schmitt: Okay, you've got to undo the strap...

121:30:39 Cernan: Let me get at it.

121:30:40 Schmitt: You got to loosen that strap and then just put her underneath, and tighten it up again.

121:30:44 Cernan: This one here?

121:30:46 Schmitt: The one on my right. Yeah.

121:30:47 Cernan: Let me turn around then. I got to get on your...Oh, on your right. Right here.

121:30:51 Schmitt: I think it is; yeah. That's where it is on yours.

121:30:53 Cernan: Yeah, I'd like to make sure the other side is all right, though.

[Gene adjusts the lower right strap on Jack's PLSS.]
121:30:55 Schmitt: Oh, okay.
[Jack turns around and presents the left side of his PLSS.]
121:30:57 Cernan: Let me...Yeah, it's all right. Turn around.
[Jack presents the right side again.]
121:31:03 Cernan: Let me just get it underneath. I got it so tight now, the Rover...Okay, now. I got it on.

121:31:12 Schmitt: Okay?

121:31:14 Cernan: Okay, now, I'll get this hooked.

[Gene gets an SCB from the gate and attaches it, top and bottom, to Jack's PLSS.]
121:31:17 Cernan: That hook's going to be a piece of cake, Jack. (Pause) That ought to keep it; and it's all on and locked. (Consulting his checklist) Okay, you got SCB-2. You got the rammer. You got a cap dispenser. Okay. You can secure SCB-1 (to Gene's PLSS as per LMP-26).
[As noted previously, Gene has put the hammer in his own shin pocket, rather than mounting the hammer on Jack's PLSS.]
121:31:34 Cernan: Doesn't this go under your...

121:31:35 Schmitt: Not yet, I don't think. I think it stays there.

121:31:39 Cernan: This (long can) does (go under the seat).

121:31:40 Schmitt: That does. Yeah. That goes under the seat.

121:31:42 Cernan: And this goes here.

121:31:45 Schmitt: Yeah.

121:31:46 Cernan: Okay.

121:31:47 Schmitt: Bob, the long can's going under my seat.

[Jack goes to his seat. The long can is about 18 inches long and 3 inches in diameter. Later in the mission, at Station 3, Gene will seal one of the drive tube sections in the long can, protecting it from cabin gases or exposure to the Earth's atmosphere. Note that, in addition to the long can, Jack's camera will be stowed under his seat while he runs back to the LM with the deep core.]
121:31:49 Parker: Okay. Copy that, Jack.

121:31:50 Cernan: They got a handover, I think.

121:31:55 Parker: Handover's complete, guys.

[The Moon will set at Goldstone in California in about an hour. Comm will now go thru Honeysuckle Creek near Canberra, Australia.]
Video Clip ( 4 min 07 sec 1.0 Mb RealVideo or 41 Mb MPEG )

121:31:58 Cernan: Okay.

[Jack returns to the gate.]
121:32:xx Schmitt: (Garbled) which way to unlock those.

121:32:07 Cernan: Okay, you can pull it off.

121:32:09 Schmitt: It's unlocked.

121:32:10 Cernan: It's unlocked. There it is.

121:32:14 Schmitt: It's usually stiff.

121:32:17 Cernan: Okay.

[They move to the left rear of the Rover. Jack has SCB-1 to attach to the left side of Gene's PLSS.]
121:32:19 Schmitt: For once, I have my camera off. (Pause)
[Schmitt - "With my camera off, I could get close enough to Gene to attach the SCB easily. With the camera sticking out a foot or so, you had to work at arm's length."]
121:32:28 Cernan: Did you get the heat flow pictures, by the way?

121:32:29 Schmitt: I got most of them. Not all of them. They revised the whole camera (sequence).

[That is, Houston had revised the list of photographic tasks.]
121:32:34 Cernan: Hey, Bob, is it going to hurt to leave the UHT in the heat flow electronics?

121:32:37 Parker: Stand by.

[Jack's checklist page LMP-22 gave him the option of configuring the LRV Sampler when he went back to the Rover after deploying the LSPE antenna at about 120:10. Had he done the task then, he would have used Gene's UHT, keeping his own for the Geophone deployment. His second option (on LMP-26 was to assemble the Sampler at the start of the Geo Prep, which he did at 121:21:55. Because he was done with his UHT, he used it as the Sampler handle rather than using Gene's.]
121:32:43 Schmitt: (To Gene) Wait a minute. I ought to get that, I guess. (Pause) That's one...(You're) tall.

121:32:55 Cernan: Here, let me lean down.

[Gene bends his knees, keeping his PLSS vertical.]
121:33:00 Schmitt: Two, and the hook's still hooked. Check for sure, here. Those hooks weren't designed for new bags.
[The SCB is about the length of Gene's upper arm, has a square cross section six inches on a side, and has sharp creases which will disappear with use. Jack's comment that 'those hooks weren't designed for new bags' indicates that, while they worked well for the well-worn bags used during training, the stiff, fresh bags are harder to secure.]
121:33:24 Parker: Okay, Jack...

121:33:25 Schmitt: Okay. I think that will ride all right.

121:33:26 Cernan: Okay.

121:33:27 Parker: ...they don't want it (the UHT) there (in the heat flow electronics package). If one of you guys can get to it and pull it out.

121:33:33 Cernan: I'll get it right now.

121:33:34 Schmitt: Okay.

[Jack goes to the gate; Gene to the heat flow site.]
121:33:35 Parker: Thank you.

121:33:36 Schmitt: Watch the alignment, as you said.

121:33:37 Cernan: Yeah. (To Bob) I sort of thought you might like it out of there. Let's stay away so I don't get a cable and I don't get dust in the mirror. The alignment is still good.

[Gene is no longer talking loudly to Houston when he is at the Rover and only increases volume a little when he moves away from the Rover.]

[Schmitt - "Part of this business about talking more loudly to Houston may be psychological distance; but I also notice that, when I'm describing something to them, I get more of an authoritarian tone. Certainly, when we were talking with each other, it was more buddy to buddy and we wouldn't have been thinking about anybody being a long way away."]

121:33:48 Parker: Okay.

121:33:50 Cernan: Now, if I can get it out.

121:33:53 Schmitt: Okay, I'm going back to the LM (as per LMP-27).

121:33:57 Cernan: Okay, Bob, the alignment's good on the heat flow, and I've got the UHT out. Jack, do you need this (UHT)?

121:34:03 Schmitt: You better...Save it. Save it.

121:34:05 Cernan: I'm going to leave it right here by the ALSEP.

121:34:07 Schmitt: Save it.

[Gene executes a flat throw; the UHT flies off, parallel to the ground, with no discernible rotation.]
121:34:10 Schmitt: Careful.

121:34:12 Cernan: Jiminy, I just threw it right here in this little ditch!

[Fendell pans away.]
121:34:15 Schmitt: Yeah, right. Okay, the other UHT is by the ALSEP. We probably ought to have it with us, Geno. For the sampler.

121:34:23 Parker: Have you got one...

121:34:26 Cernan: Well, you've got one...

121:34:27 Parker: ...UHT sampler?

121:34:27 Schmitt: Yeah. That's all right.

121:34:29 Cernan: (Garbled).

121:34:29 Parker: Okay, we gather you're on the way back to the LM with the core stems there, Jack.

121:34:38 Schmitt: Yes, sir.

121:34:39 Parker: Okay.

[Jack, also, is no longer talking loudly to Houston. He probably leaves for the LM at this point. He is at the top of LMP-27. After Gene takes care of a few housekeeping chores, he will be at the top of CDR-25. Journal Contributor Lennie Waugh noted that Jack's more-or-less-direct path back to the LM can be seen in a frame (scan by Brian McInall) from the 16-mm camera mounted in his window during lift-off. The initial path Jack took out to the ALSEP site is south (left) of the return path, as in an alternately labeled version by Waugh. Waugh has also assembled a post-EVA-3 window mini-pan showing the two sets of tracks. A labeled version is also available.]
121:34:44 Cernan: Okay, Bob, I'm going to take the TV away from you and get these battery covers squared away before I put the tongs and the camera on.

121:34:53 Parker: Okay, Geno, and you guys have the gnomon in the little quiver, right?

121:35:00 Cernan: Yes, sir. The temperature on the batteries are 96 and 110.

121:35:05 Parker: Okay, thank you.

121:35:06 Cernan: Can I close the (battery) covers?

121:35:08 Parker: Roger.

121:35:09 Cernan: Can I close the covers?

121:35:10 Parker: Roger; Roger.

[Fendell finds Jack running toward the LM. The Rover seems noticeably higher than the LM. However, Jack is down in the swale and that may be helping to create the impression.]
121:35:15 Schmitt: Hey, you're turning our voice around, Bob.

121:35:19 Parker: No, I said...

121:35:19 Schmitt: We're getting a repeat.

121:35:20 Parker: I said, "Close the covers, please."

121:35:27 Schmitt: That's right. I heard what you said, but you're turning our voice around. (Pause)

[That is, they are hearing themselves in the earphones after the communications has made the two-and-a-half-second round trip to Earth and back. As Jack runs, splashes of light are visible at his feet. The effect is due to sunlight reflecting off sprays of dust that he kicks up as he runs. The best example of this is in the TV coverage of Gene running toward the Rover, from the east, just before they leave Shorty Crater on EVA-2.]
RealVideo Clip by Mick Hyde (1 min 12 sec)

121:35:45 Schmitt: (Singing) I was strolling on the Moon one day...

121:35:49 LM Crew: (Both singing)...in the merry, merry month of

121:35:51 Cernan: May. Schmitt: December.

121:35:52 Cernan: No, May.

121:35:54 Schmitt: May.

121:35:55 Cernan: May's the month this year.

121:35:56 Schmitt: May. That's right.

121:35:57 Cernan: May is the year, the month.

121:36:00 Schmitt: (Singing) When much to my surprise, a pair of bonny eyes...be-doop-doo-doo...

121:36:05 Parker: Sorry about that, guys, but today may be December.

[Schmitt - "We had worked hard, and our fingers, our hands, and our arms were very tired. But it was still fun. And, without the aches in our arms and hands, it would have been even more fun."]

[The song "While Strolling through the Park One Day" was written by Ed Haley in 1884.]

121:36:08 Cernan: Okay, the battery cover...

Video Clip ( 0 min 43 sec 0.2 Mb RealVideo or 7 Mb MPEG )

121:36:13 Schmitt: (Humming the same song) Da-da-da-da-da-da-da-dee-da-dee...

[Schmitt - "All this singing that I was doing illustrates that it was possible to run in the suit without expending a lot of effort. By using what can be described as a cross-country-skiing stride, I was keeping changes in the suit volume to a minimum. I was moving my legs back and forth, but that was about it."]

[A re-design of the waist joint - done so that the J-mission crews could sit on the Rover - made a big difference in running efficiency. The Apollo 12 crew ran a distance of a few hundred feet at a speed of 5 - 6 kph and had to take a rest because their heart rates got up in the 160 beat/minute range. They also got a bit winded. It is important to note, however, that they, too, used a loping, foot-to-foot stride. By the time Jack reaches the SEP site at the end of this run, his heart rate will peak at 130 beats per minute.]

121:36:17 Cernan: Okay, Bob, the battery covers are closed. (As per CDR-25 ) I'm ready to go Mode switch 1. I guess I'll just wave goodbye. You look pretty clean, so I won't touch you.
[That is, he won't dust the TV.]
121:36:30 Parker: Okay, thank you.

121:36:36 Cernan: Oh, man. It's even hard to move you (the TV camera) counter-clockwise. Here we go.

[Gene swings the TV camera around so that it points aft. Jack has not yet reached the LM. He started running at about 121:34:38 and has covered something less than the 180 meters between the Rover parking place and the LM in two minutes. Therefore, his average, straight-line speed, is no more than 5.4 kilometers per hour, the speed he achieved on the 50 meter run from the west geophone at 120:27:11.]
121:36:41 Cernan: Counter-clockwise, facing aft. Okay, I'm going to go Mode switch number 1. Okay, we're Mode switch number 1...
[TV off.]
121:36:56 Parker: Rog. We can confirm that.

121:36:57 Cernan: ...and you want me to leave those LCRU blankets open 100 percent, right?

121:37:02 Parker: Roger. That's affirm.

121:37:04 Cernan: Okay, now I got to mount my camera and tether my tongs (to the yo-yo).

[The yo-yo is a tool holder that Gene is wearing on the front of his suit, below the RCU and camera bracket. It consists of a length of wire, wound on a spring-operated reel, and a clip which Gene is attaching to his tongs. If Gene wants to use the tongs, he will just grab the handle and pull them away from his body, unreeling the yo-yo wire. When he is done, he can release the tongs and let the spring rewind the wire and pull the tongs back against his suit. Jack is wearing a yo-yo but has chosen not to wear his tongs. His usual tool will be the scoop and it cannot be attached to the tongs because the extension handle is too big around to fit into the clip.]
121:37:09 Cernan: Boy, Jack, I can't see you at all. Looking into the east is terrible. All I can tell you is that there's a LM there. Okay, "mount camera, tether tongs." See if my camera's going to work. Bob, I'm on Bravo - mag Bravo - and frame count 19.
[Magazine Bravo is Apollo magazine 134. Gene is finishing up the last items on CDR-24.]
121:37:39 Parker: Okay; copy that, Gene. (Pause)

121:37:50 Cernan: And for EMU status, I can give you about 36 percent, no flags, 3.85. And I'm still Intermediate cooling.

[They are 277 minutes into the EVA with 36% oxygen left. At this rate, they would have a 433 minute EVA with no reserves. The EVA actually ends at 432 minutes, but with reserves to about 540 minutes.]
121:38:09 Parker: Okay. Copy that.

121:38:10 Cernan: Okay, inventory. Camera, tongs, gnomon. Okay, I'm ready to get on. Ready to get on.

121:38:18 Schmitt: (To Bob) Okay, you want us to take the...(Jack stumbles) Oop! That rock by your front porch (step) is really a major nuisance. (Pause)

[Jack is referring to a rock next to the ladder footpad that he mentioned in his commentary following 117:16:11. As per his cuff checklist page LMP-27, when Jack left the ALSEP deploymant site, he was carrying the core stems and layed them on the plus-Z struts before going around to Quad III to offload the SEP transmitter. Jack may be thinking of the footpad as the first step up to the porch.]
121:38:31 Cernan: Oh, doggone it!

121:38:34 Schmitt: What's the problem?

121:38:35 Cernan: Oh! Every time I get on, I get dust around. I still haven't learned how to get on yet. (Pause) You'd think after three times, I'd know better. I know better, but it's...

121:38:53 Schmitt: Okay, I've got the (SEP) transmitter (as per LMP-27). I'm heading west...or east. (Laughing and correcting himself) Heading east. Sorry about that. (Pause) Bum bum bum bum bum.

121:39:11 Cernan: Okay, I'm Primary (Rover power). Okay, you want a Nav initialize here, huh, Houston (as per CDR-25)?

121:39:17 Parker: That's affirmative.

121:39:22 Schmitt: By the way, Bob, Station 6 is pretty obvious up on the hill. It's fairly high up. I don't know if we'll get to drive up there or not.

[Station 6, on the lower slope of the North Massif, will be the first stop on EVA-3. The position of the Station 6 boulders is best shown in AS17-141- 21550, taken during the drive to Station 6. Station 6 is about 550 meters east and 170 meters downslope from the very large, dark boulder with the prominent track. That boulder is quite a way up the slope of the North Massif on the left side of the picture. Turning Point Rock, which they will drive to on their way to Station 6, is above the TV camera, and Station 6 is to the right, with an elevation about midway between those of the dark boulder and Turning Point Rock.]
121:39:31 Parker: Okay. I think you can see the boulder and that's how you can tell, right?

121:39:37 Schmitt: Yep. And the crater (possibly a small crater just downslope from the Station 6 boulders). (Pause) A shame not to...Well, maybe that's the wrong one. I'll have to check the map. (Pause) A shame not to go to Station 1! Sure is a shame. Why don't you consider Station 1 as a possibility?

[Emory Crater is 650 meters in diameter and is located at the southern edge of the apparent dark-mantle area of the valley. Indeed, from overhead photography, it appeared in pre-mission analyses that only part of the crater is covered with the mantle. Therefore, a visit to Emory promised clues as to the origin of the mantle. In addition, there were indications that the crater might have penetrated through the valley fill and dug up samples of the original valley floor, materials presumably similar to those making up the Massifs. However, evidence from the seismic profiling experiment and from the Command Module radar experiment suggest that the valley fill is about two kilometers deep. Because Emory would have penetrated only to a depth of about 150 to 200 meters, the possibility that Emory penetrated through the valley fill now seems unlikely.]
121:40:07 Cernan: Okay, Bob, let me give you some numbers (from the Rover instruments).

121:40:10 Parker: We're ready.

121:40:13 Cernan: Sun shadow is zero. I am rolled right 4 degrees. I am pitch zero. I can't be rolled right 4 degrees. That indicator can't be right. I question that. I might be rolled left a couple of degrees. (Pause) Are you happy with that, Bob? Roll indicator is indicating...Make it 3 degrees right.

121:41:03 Parker: Okay, and I copy...(Pause) Okay, torque to 279 will be the heading. 279.

121:41:19 Cernan: Okay. (Pause)

[The Sun-Shadow Device is mounted on the Rover console, and is usually folded down against the panel for storage. To use the device, Gene raises the arm until it extends out from the panel at a 90 degree angle. When the Rover is headed to within 15 degrees of down-Sun, a gnomon on the end of the arm casts a shadow on a scale affixed to the panel. During the last minute or so, Gene maneuvered the Rover until the shadow gave a zero reading. Because the position of the Sun in the local sky is known accurately, by using this procedure, Gene has put the Rover on a well-determined, true heading of 279 degrees (9 degrees north of west). He will now "torque" or precess the gyro until the heading indicator reads 279.]
121:41:37 Cernan: The heading when I put the Nav Power breaker In, Bob, was 234.
[The Rover Navigation system has not yet been initialized on the Moon, so the heading of 234 may be a value preset prior to launch from Earth, possibly with some drift introduced during the flight and during deployment. Details of the Nav initialization are given on a decal on the Rover, rather than in Gene's checklist.]
121:41:40 Parker: Okay, I copy that. We'll torque that to 279.

121:41:47 Cernan: Okay. I'm waiting for my minute and a half here.

121:41:50 Parker: Roger that. (Long Pause)

[Gene is waiting a minute and a half for the Nav system to power-up.]
121:42:19 Schmitt: By the way, Bob, LMP is at 39 percent (oxygen), 3.88 (psi), and no flags, no tones.

121:42:33 Parker: Okay. Copy that, Jack.

121:42:38 Schmitt: I'm at the SEP site (planned to be 100 meters east of the LM), and I found a place I think we can lay out a pretty good grid.

[At the end of the EVA, Gene and Jack will lay out a cross-shaped antenna pattern for the SEP experiment. Jack is actually about 140 meters east of the LM. LMP-27 has a handwritten note "Thumb=350'", a reminder, perhaps, that when Jack is 350 feet from the LM, his thumb will just cover the spacecraft when held at arm's length.]
121:42:45 Parker: Okay, Jack, and when you lay it (the transmitter) down there, we want to put it down with the gnomon side, the side you're going to face the Sun, you want to put that facing away from the Sun. We found out a thermal constraint this evening, just as the EVA started.
[The SEP, like many other pieces of equipment, has a short, shadow-throwing gnomon and an angular scale for orientation relative to the Sun.]
121:43:04 Schmitt: Okay. Away from the Sun. Gnomon...You want the gnomon side or corner?

121:43:13 Parker: The gnomon side away from the Sun. The side with the solar panels on it (has) to be in the shade.

121:43:20 Schmitt: Okay. (Pause)

[Jack will deploy the solar panels after the geology traverse.]
121:43:31 Cernan: Bob, everything's working fine so far. She's zeroed and I'm torqued. And I'm ready to press on. Reset is back Off. Okay, Jack, here I come.

121:43:42 Schmitt: Okay. You see me?

121:43:44 Cernan: No, I'm facing the other way. (Long Pause)

[Gene had to point the Rover west in order to initialize the navigation system; he now turns east, into the Sun.]
121:44:01 Cernan: Boy, I tell you, just about all you can see in that direction (east) is the LM. Boy, that's tough driving into the Sun!

121:44:06 Schmitt: Go right to the LM, and...or, a little bit to your left, to the left (north) of the LM.

121:44:15 Cernan: Yeah, I've got to go to the LM and give them a reading here (of range and bearing to the ALSEP site).

121:44:19 Schmitt: Okay.

121:44:20 Parker: That's affirmative, Gene.

[The Rover uses an internal navigation system which depends counts of wheel rotation to meaure distance traveled and, when combined with heading information provided by a directional gyro, calculates the range and bearing to the last initialization point. During the Apollo 15 and Apollo 16 traverses, the system was shown to be accurate to about 100 to 200 meters over distances of a few kilometers.]

[Schmitt - "There were times when NASA would talk about us having trouble getting back to the LM; and that was ludicrous. We would always know where the LM was in a valley with as many distinctive features as this one had. And, of course, you could always follow your tracks back. So the safety aspects of Rover navigation were always exaggerated. The Nav system may have been included originally in the Rover design for safety reasons; but, once we had it, its prime usefulness was clearly in position location, in finding our way from the LM to the various geology stations."]

121:44:21 Cernan: (Making a general comment to Jack) You get that shadow (of the LM) up there (to block the glare of the Sun) and you're all right. Say again, Bob?

121:44:26 Parker: That's affirmative. We want the range and bearing at the LM. I'm glad you remembered.

[These Rover readouts will give a first estimate of the ALSEP location until a much more accurate determination can be made from the photographs of the LM taken from the ALSEP site and of the ALSEP taken from the LM windows. Because the sizes of these man-made objects are very accurately known, measurements of the photographic images directly give distances. The task of reporting range and bearing to the ALSEP from the LM are on CDR-25.]

[Journal Contributor Marv Hein notes that, in real time, it should have been possible to estimate the LM ALSEP distance from the TV images.]

121:44:32 Cernan: Yes, sir, I'll give it to you. I even got...(To himself, coming up on a big hole) Ooh! Ooh, don't get in there. Whoo! (Pause) (To Bob) (I) even got the low gain (antenna) working for you. I don't know if you're using it.

121:44:50 Parker: I think we're using the LM right now.

[That is, Houston is picking up signals going from the backpacks to the LM and then to Earth, rather than through the low-gain antenna.]

[Schmitt - "It may have been that there were different frequencies for transmissions to Earth through the LM and the Rover low-gain transmitter. But, whatever the details, the decision as to which to use was Houston's; we had no control or influence over that, except for pointing the low-gain antenna."]

121:44:58 Cernan: Boy, that LM is pretty. Whoo! (Pause)

121:45:15 Schmitt: Bob, everything I've seen so far indicates that the so-called "subfloor" boulders - if we have gotten that deep - are this gabbro. I'm out here at the SEP site, and the large blocks are still the plagioclase pyroxene (gabbro)...

121:45:41 Cernan: Jack, let me give them a range. I'll be on my way out.

121:45:43 Schmitt: Go ahead.

[Throughout the mission, Jack uses the term 'subfloor' and by it, means the valley-filling material underlying the regolith and the presumed dark mantle. To the uninitiated, 'subfloor' would seem a more natural name for the original floor, the material that was overlain by the lava fill; however, this is not the meaning of the term as used here.]

[Schmitt - "I never liked the term 'subfloor'. It was something that had come out of the US Geological Survey, from the lunar mapping people, and it had always seemed contrived."]

121:45:45 Cernan: Okay, bearing 292, (range) 0.2, and (distance driven) 0.2. I'm standing (parked) right in front of the MESA.
[That is, the ALSEP is 22 degrees north of west from LM and at a range of 0.2 kilometers. Gene has driven 0.2 kilometers since leaving the ALSEP. The three-digit range indicator changes from 001 to 002 at a range of 150 meters and the distance indicator changes to 002 at 200 meters. The formal indication is, then, that the LM is between 200 and 250 meters from the ALSEP. Because Gene has not driven in a straight line, the distance reading should be reduced by about ten percent. The actual range of the LM from the ALSEP is about 185 meters. Because Gene had parked the Rover 60 feet (20 meters) northeast of the Central Station, the Rover-LM distance was about 180 meters, which agrees nicely with the 180 - 250 meter range indicated by the Nav system.]
121:45:50 Parker: Okay. Beautiful, Geno. Thank you.

121:45:57 Cernan: Okay. I'm coming, Jack. (Pause)

121:46:06 Schmitt: The zap pits have nice white halos, although, for the most part, the rock's too coarse to show them very well. Some of the larger ones have white halos. (Pause) We may not be down to the subfloor, but it's hard to say.

[Schmitt - "I wasn't actually looking at rocks at this point because, as I remember, there weren't any at the SEP site much over fist size. This was just a chance, while I was working on the SEP, for me to regurgitate some observations I'd made up to this point. When I said that 'We may not be down to the subfloor', I think I meant that I hadn't seen anything yet that wasn't recycled regolith."]
MP3 Audio Clip ( 20 min 44 sec )

121:46:27 Cernan: Hey, Bob, making 8 to 10 kilometers (per hour), and I'm barely moving.

[The terrain around the LM is rather flat and a speed of 10 km/hr - about 10 minutes to the mile - doesn't seem impressive. However, when they get out into rolling terrain, with the potential of finding small, deep craters to jar the Rover just over every ridge, the ride gets a bit more exciting.]

[Cernan - "The Rover just didn't move very fast. It wasn't made to go very fast, but it could sure save a lot of energy. You could pack a lot of gear and save a lot of walking time, and it allowed us to cover territory and ground we never would have covered otherwise. I think probably we averaged 8-12 kilometers (per hour), and I think we hit a speed record of 14-15 kilometers coming downhill. It had four electric motors, one on each wheel for redundancy, and we would run with all four motors all the time. We didn't necessarily use both fore and aft steering all the time, but we always ran all four motors and 8-12 kilometers was about as fast as it could go. Your sensation of speed is probably what you would get down here. It didn't seem like you were moving very fast, and you really weren't. But you were moving, and it was nice to just sit back there and relax as you went from one place to another, as slow as it might seem. We weren't on a 400 mile trip, so it didn't matter how fast it was."]

["Of course, it could still be very sporty driving. When you start getting one wheel in a crater, or you hit a bump, or you start driving on the side of a hill, you really do appreciate the one-sixth gravity. If you hit a bump, you'd go u-u-u-u-p and come down. It wouldn't just be bing-bang, up and down. And on the side of a hill, you would start thinking that the Rover was just going to tip over and fall over on you. You didn't feel like there's much holding you to the surface at all. It was good, sporty driving; just not very fast."]

["The Rover had great maneuverability, particularly with the fore and aft steering - articulated steering, I guess it is. You could really maneuver it, really turn very sharp. You couldn't go real fast, but you could go. There is some film of John Young where he was kicking up dust and you'd think he was going 50 mph. He probably was going 10-12 kilometers at the most. On the lunar surface, it's a sporty little ride. It was fun."]

["I don't know how fast you would really want to go up there, quite frankly. You can't see what's up ahead of you too well. You know, you're driving along and it's so bland. With the shadows the way they are, especially if you're looking into the Sun, you just can't see much. You can't see where those holes are; you can't see what's ahead of you, and the next thing you know, wow, you're in a hole or you're up. You'll see us reacting to the little craters throughout here as we drive the Rover."]

[Schmitt - "I'm quite certain that, even at 10 kilometers per hour, there were times when we had all four wheels off the ground. That really made it sporty. And the worst direction to drive in, I thought, was away from the Sun, because you had a 'white out' situation. The lack of shadows made it hard even to see boulders. But, the glare off your visors did make up-Sun difficult."]

121:46:36 Cernan: Where've you got the SEP, Jack?

121:46:38 Schmitt: Right out over there.

121:46:41 Cernan: Okay, let me give them a bearing, distance, and range, and some numbers here (at the SEP transmitter).

121:46:45 Schmitt: Meet you over there.

121:46:47 Cernan: Okay. (Pause) Ohh! (Long Pause)

121:47:03 Schmitt: Bob, I did see a dense gray rock that's different than the others on my traverse out here. We'll try to find some of that, too.

121:47:12 Cernan: Okay, Bob, I'm reading 278, 003, and 003 at the SEP site.

[The actual range is about 330 meters from the ALSEP and about 140 meters from the LM.]
121:47:19 Parker: Okay. Copy that, Geno. And how about giving me amp-hours and batteries just as long as you're there?

121:47:30 Cernan: Yes, sir, it's coming at you. Amp-hours are 112 and 110; batteries are 92 (degrees) and about 112 (degrees).

[Cernan - "The needle width was at least a couple of degrees, so there was a little hesitation here as I decided what figure to give."]
121:47:45 Parker: Okay, copy that, Geno.

121:47:47 Cernan: Motors are all off-scale low.

121:47:51 Parker: Yeah, okay thank you.

121:47:54 Cernan: Nav is going to Reset.

121:47:57 Parker: Say again there, Gene. You're going to go to Reset, right?

121:48:01 Cernan: Yes, sir; going to Reset.

121:48:04 Parker: Okay. (Pause)

[Gene is re-initializing the Rover navigation system.]
121:48:08 Parker: Jack, you can be getting on. You won't need a bomb (seismic charge), and I guess you won't need the LMP camera unless you want it. We'll be deploying the bomb at Steno.

121:48:21 Schmitt: (Laughing) I thought we were playing it by the checklist, Geno. (Giving the charge to Gene to hold while he climbs on the Rover) Here's the bomb.

[Jack will soon regret having ignored Bob's advice about not carrying a charge during the drive. Checklist page LMP-27 calls for Jack to carry a charge, but only because he was to have deployed it near Steno during the planned drive to Emory. According to the original plan, Gene would have stopped the Rover long enough for Jack, without getting out of the Rover, to put the charge on the ground. As Jack will discover, holding the charge will tire his hands, unnecessarily in this case.]
121:48:24 Cernan: Okay, give it to me.

121:48:25 Schmitt: The "charge".

[Schmitt - "During training, Bob liked to use the term 'bomb' and, here, I'm trying to get him to change it."]
121:48:26 Cernan: I've got it.

121:48:28 Parker: Yeah, it just happens that the station is at the place we were going to deploy the charge.

[Bob is saying again that Jack doesn't need to carry the charge.]
121:48:35 Schmitt: Okay, well, we got it off (the transporter on the back of the Rover).

121:48:36 Cernan: Okay. Do you know which side of Steno he wants us to go, Jack?

121:48:39 Schmitt: Not yet.

121:48:40 Parker: Okay, let me fill you in on the plan, guys. We're going to go to the west side of Steno, which is where you would have driven by anyway, and the stop will be at the 340/1.2, which is where you've got the little Delta for EP 6, in your checklist. And we will plan on spending about three-zero minutes there sampling, primarily boulders.

[A map of the planned traverse is shown on both LMP-28 and CDR-26. South is up, on these maps, and the unboxed numbers associated with each traverse segment are a heading and segment length. The boxed numbers associated with the turning points are bearing and range to the nominal SEP transmitter location. Because the navigation system gives the Rover's position relative to the initialization point at the SEP transmitter - then, to the extent that the absolute location of the SEP is known, the heading and range indications can be used to find the planned geology stations. With practice and a good map, visual navigation is sometimes possible, but the undulating terrain, combined with the basic problem of estimating sizes and distances, makes the navigation instruments invaluable. At this point in the mission, the location of the LM and, therefore, of the SEP transmitter has not yet been pinned down and there will be some confusion. Based on the crew's site descriptions from the LM window, Houston is estimating that, at the west rim of Steno, the bearing to the SEP transmitter will be 340 degrees (twenty degrees west of north) and the range 1.2 kilometers. Relative to the actual SEP location, the bearing and range at the west rim of Steno is 352/1.5. Because of this fairly substantial difference, they will end up stopping just short of the northwest rim. Boulders are of interest since they are likely to be samples of the subfloor. Boulders that could be picked out in the Apollo 15 photographs are marked with crosses. Checklist pages LMP-29 and CDR-27 give details of the planned traverse. Pages LMP-30 and CDR-28 are identical and show a schematic of Emory Crater and the original site of Station 1.]
121:49:15 Schmitt: Okay, Geno, west side of Steno, then.

121:49:17 Cernan: Okay. I got it here (in the checklist). (Pause) Okay...

121:49:24 Schmitt: You got a good feeling on how to head out of here?

121:49:26 Cernan: Yeah. (Pause) I want to get around the back side - now that I'm down there - on the back side of Trident, and make sure that what I'm looking at is Trident over there.

[They are planning to drive into the Sun until they come abeam of the northeast corner of Trident and then will turn south toward Steno. Gene is hoping that, during the first part of the drive, he can clear up his residual doubts about where he's landed. He actually is, of course, about 100 meters north of Poppie rather than West Trident.]
121:49:39 Schmitt: Okay, let me try to get on this thing.
[This is Jack's first Rover ride of the mission and his first attempt to climb aboard. Ken Glover has produced a video clip of Jack mounting the Rover onboard the 1/6th-g airplane.]
121:49:43 Parker: Okay. And, 17, just to fill you in a little bit more here. We're looking at a six (hour) plus four-five (minute) EVA. We've given you fifteen minutes to drive to Station 1; thirty minutes at Station 1; and fifteen minutes to drive back to the (spelling the acronym) S.E.P., and then deploying the S.E.P. for two-two minutes. And then a four-zero-minute close-out at six plus four five.

121:50:07 Cernan: I'm sorry, Bob. After 30 minutes at Station 1, what did you say?

121:50:11 Parker: Okay. Then we're going to drive back. There's a 15-minute return to the SEP site; and then 22 minutes at the SEP site to deploy the SEP; and then return to the LM and 45 minutes for the close-out.

121:50:27 Cernan: Okay. Understand. (To Jack) Okay, you strapped in?

121:50:32 Schmitt: Yes, sir.

[The seat belts had been a problem on Apollo 15 because no allowance had been made for the fact that, on the Moon, the suits don't compress as much when the astronauts are seated as they do on Earth. The problem was easily fixed for Apollos 16 and 17.]
121:50:34 Cernan: Yeah, we've got to start getting in this Rover facing 90 degrees to the seats, I think. (Pause) I did the same thing.

121:50:40 Schmitt: Did I kick dust?

121:50:41 Cernan: Yeah, we both did.

121:50:43 Schmitt: I tried to knock it all off my feet.

121:50:44 Cernan: Yeah; that's impossible.

[Cernan - "Best way to get in was to face out from the Rover, sit in the seat, get down, and then kick your feet up and then throw them around. Here, Jack probably faced front, then tried to get one leg up and then another leg up. By starting out facing out from the Rover, you also cut down on the amount of dust you scattered on things."]

[Schmitt - "What I ended up doing most of the time was standing at the side of the Rover, facing front, and jumping, more or less straight up and over toward the seat; and then rotated my feet up and forward so that I came down in the seat."]

[There is good TV coverage of Jack jumping onto his Rover seat at the end of Station 3 at about 2 min 30 seconds into the video clip that starts at 145:00:57.]

121:50:46 Cernan: Okay, Jack. Let's see if we can't get around Trident East over here.

121:50:51 Schmitt: Well, I wish I didn't have this charge. Shouldn't have played it by the checklist. I wasn't paying attention.

[Jack has finally realized that there is no reason to carry the charge; it could have been left in its transporter on the back of the Rover. He is probably already noticing his hands getting tired from having to keep them closed around the charge against the pressure of the suit. He is probably also becoming aware that the charge is keeping him from using his maps and checklist efficiently.]

[NASA photo KSC-72PC-436 shows the crew posing for a portrait on the 1-g trainer and the charge transporter and some mock-up charges can be seen mounted on top of the geopallet behind Gene's seat.]

[Although Jack's page LMP-29 indicates that he hadn't planned to take any pictures during the drive, he will take a total of sixteen frames, beginning with AS17-136- 20723, an up-Sun picture taken about now. The next two frames, 20724 and 20725 are mostly blocked by the traverse map. Notice that, in all three frames, the camera is tilted down to the right and, because this is true for almost all of Jack's EVA-1 traverse photos, I conclude that either he was sitting tilted to the right and/or his camera was tilted.]

[All the frames Jack and Gene take during the drive to Station 1 are displayed in the PDF document ( 16 Mb ).]

121:51:02 Cernan: We're on the move, Bob.

121:51:04 Schmitt: Okay, this is Trident, isn't it? So we're starting out...

121:51:08 Cernan: Well, it's got to be.

121:51:10 Schmitt: Yeah. So, you're starting out on the...You really want to head about 29...

121:51:17 Cernan: No, no, no.

121:51:18 Schmitt: No, wait a minute. Where are we?

121:51:19 Cernan: We want to go southeast.

121:51:20 Schmitt: 181...

[Jack is misreading the LMP-28 map showing the planned traverse path from the landing site to Emory. Because the traverse is merely being truncated and they think they have landed virtually at the planned point, they plan to follow the checklist and drive east on a heading of 116 (ESE) for 600 meters to get around the east side of Trident and then turn south to a heading of 181 for the drive to the west rim of Steno. The planned bearing and range at the turning point are 296/0.5.]
121:51:23 Parker: 17, we'll start out on the same general traverse that you've been on. It's just that we'll stop it sooner.

121:51:34 Schmitt: Yeah, we understand.

121:51:35 Parker: Okay.

121:51:36 Schmitt: We're just getting our bearings, Bob.

121:51:38 Cernan: This (possibly Poppie) has got to be Trident East, right here, Jack. See that? That's got to be Trident East. That's the big one.

121:51:43 Schmitt: On the right or the left?

121:51:45 Cernan: On the right.

121:51:47 Schmitt: Yeah.

121:51:48 Cernan: And Poppie was just over about where...

121:51:52 Schmitt: Watch your...

121:51:53 Cernan: Yeah. I just want to get our bearings here. You can't look to the east. Okay. I've got to...(Pause)

121:52:02 Schmitt: That's an awful big depression over there, isn't it? (Pause)

121:52:10 Cernan: It (the map) says (to) go along this way. Boy, it sure is.

[Cernan - "When you're riding and not expending a lot of energy, it's a lot easier to look around and really see what's there."]
121:52:16 Schmitt: Whee! Watch it. Ho - ho - ho - hold it, hold it, hold it!

121:52:20 Cernan: Got it, got it, got it (garbled). (Burst of static which clears after a few seconds) Boy, I tell you; I've got to get out (of facing) east. Stand by.

[Cernan - "We probably ran smack into a small crater - or maybe a boulder - that we couldn't see facing east and looking right into the Sun. And when I said, 'got it, got it' I meant I had the situation under control. Running into little craters or over little rocks wasn't critical; it was just that we didn't want to run into something big enough to matter. Here, we probably went down in a little crater and came back up. We did that a lot; but we got a little more excited here because this is our first real ride together on this thing. The burst of static probably indicates that I made a turn to try to avoid the crater and lost the low-gain lock."]

["There are three things that I remember most about the Rover ride. Number one, when you were driving east into the Sun, it was almost impossible to see things ahead of you. When you were driving cross-Sun you had much better visibility and depth perception because of the shadows; and even driving down-Sun you could certainly see the boulders. Second was the fact that you often couldn't see small craters and they were important in the same way that potholes are to you when you're driving down the highway. The difference is that, in one-sixth gravity, when you do hit a boulder or you do drop one wheel in a small crater, you literally lift the Rover off the ground. I mean, you were literally driving on three wheels a good part of the time. It wasn't a choppy, sports-car feel, driving down the highway going bang-bang, bang. It was more of a waltz. Boom, and you go u-u-up and come down. Hit another one; u-u-up and come down. And, of course, not only did the Rover bounce but so did we. So it was a very good thing that we had snug seatbelts. Without them, we could easily have bounced out of the seats. And, lastly, the reduced gravity was particularly noticeable when you were driving on the side of a hill. I remember many times when we were driving on the side of a hill and Jack commenting that we were going to roll over. And indeed, because you have less gravity holding you down on the Moon, that was not a false perception; it was fact. You had to be careful on the side of a hill, because if you hit a bump with an uphill wheel, you could lift the thing off the ground and possibly become unstable and tip over. Of course, the situation was more obvious if you were in the downhill seat and I tried to keep Jack on the downside. It was much more comfortable on the uphill side; and that's a commander's prerogative when he's driving the Rover."]

["Those were the three things that were most noticeable; and I don't know that it would have been advantageous to have had a Rover that could have gone any faster. You needed to be careful in driving and probably couldn't have used the additional capability. When we set a speed record of somewhere around 14 or 15 km/hr coming down a hill, we were really hauling the metal; we were really tearing. And, not being able to see all that well ahead, I don't think we would have wanted to come down much faster. Of course, we were traveling over uncharted terrain; and, if we'd been at an established lunar base with a yellow stripe down the middle of a 'paved' surface - or, at least, if we'd been on a surveyed path with no boulders or potholes in the way - then we could have driven comfortably at a lot higher speed. But if we'd hit a boulder at 10 km/hr and smashed the hell out of the front end of the Rover, we'd have been out of business. We could have gotten back to the LM, but we wouldn't have gotten the job done that we'd gone to the Moon to do."]

[The seatbelt latching mechanism is shown in training photo KSC-72PC-346 in which we see Jack's seatbelt belt latch hanging from the Auxilliary staff at next to Gene's right arm. The hook at the end of the latching mechanism was fitted to the U-shaped handrail as can be seen in AS17-135-20544. After the hook was in place, the T-shaped handle on the latching mechanism was thrown across to the inboard position to tighten the belt and lock it.]

121:52:30 Schmitt: Gene, I think...

121:52:31 Cernan: I'm going to head about one two zero (120 degrees) out of here.

121:52:35 Schmitt: You've got another hole on your right here.

121:52:37 Cernan: I got it.

121:52:40 Schmitt: Whoa, whoa. I'm not sure what's the matter. Why don't you go left there?

121:52:44 Cernan: Okay.

121:52:45 Schmitt: Go left around this thing.

121:52:48 Parker: And, 17; Houston. For your advice, we're trying to use the low-gain antenna on this traverse also. (Pause) Might try and be good guys and turn it for us when you have to.

121:53:05 Cernan: Okay. Bob.

121:53:06 Parker: That's general reminder number 1. (Static)

[On this traverse, Jack and Gene won't often be out of sight of the LM and could communicate through it to Earth. As a general rule, however, NASA prefers to communicate through the low-gain antenna on the Rover, thereby decreasing the frequency and length of communications breaks.]

[Cernan - "Pointing the antenna was easy enough when you were parked, but the indicator was really useful when you were driving, particularly when you were driving with the Earth behind you or well off to the side."]

[The indicator on the low-gain antenna is described at 119:07:05.]

121:53:14 Schmitt: Gene, I think we need to head south.

121:53:17 Cernan: Yeah. We've got to go out here southeast. What's that big map look like in relation to Bear Mountain to you?

121:53:26 Schmitt: You mean the...(Pause) I'm not sure I can get to it.

[The traverse maps are clip mounted to the accessory staff mounted on Jack's inboard handhold. There are probably at least two maps, one showing the immediate area of this traverse, the other showing the whole valley. To look at the "big map", Jack would probably have to lean forward and to his left to lift up the local map.]

[Schmitt - "With that charge in my hands, I'm not sure I could have reached for anything. And I think the reason my voice is sounding so subdued in this section is that my forearms are starting to get tired and I am mostly concentrating on not dropping the charge."]

121:53:34 Schmitt: Okay, I want...

121:53:36 Cernan: It's calling for 116 at 0.6 to (garbled) near the SEP.

[The map on CDR-26 shows the first leg of the traverse being a 0.6 kilometer drive on a heading of 116, starting from the spot of his Nav initialization at the SEP site.]
121:53:43 Schmitt: I ended up with this charge in my hand. There's a big...What are you headed now, south pretty much?

121:53:50 Cernan: Yeah.

121:53:52 Schmitt: I think you're getting...That must be Emory over there. See with all the blocks in the wall?

121:54:01 Cernan: Where you looking? Which way?

121:54:04 Schmitt: Southeast.

121:54:05 Cernan: Way over there.

121:54:06 Schmitt: Yeah.

[Cernan - "The helmet didn't turn; so you didn't have a good view. To see to the side, you had to turn your head inside the helmet; but because of the visors, that only gave you a little bit of a view to the side. The only other choice was to turn your body and, because the suit was so stiff, that was very difficult. Consequently, you didn't have a lot of peripheral vision."]
121:54:07 Cernan: This is very easily Steno right over here. Let's see, we're between the two big ones...That would be...

121:54:13 Schmitt: That would be Powell.

121:54:14 Cernan: That would be Powell on the right. (Pause)

121:54:18 Schmitt: You think? Certainly doesn't look like the L&A (Landing and Ascent facility) yet.

121:54:21 Cernan: (Chuckling) No, it sure doesn't.

[The L&A consisted of a site model suspended over a moveable TV camera on the floor of the facility. The camera moved in response to crew input and provided a view in either the LM simulator windows or, for the Rover missions, on a monitor that was part of an LRV mockup. Dave Scott and Jim Irwin were the first to use the L&A to get a feel for driving the Rover at their landing site. Jim Irwin made the first test drive about a week prior to the Apollo 15 launch and, while local detail wasn't reproduced, the simulations did give Scott and Irwin a feel for the relative location and appearance of the major site features. Apollo 16 photo 72-H-430 shows John Young and Charlie Duke doing a simulated Rover traverse.]

[Cernan - "I can remember playing in the simulator and going down and flying around the valley. It wasn't the same picture you got when you're were sitting in the Rover 2-3 feet above the surface. It was like taking an airplane at a couple hundred feet and flying around the different parts of the valley just to get a feel for what it looked like. I don't recall that that helped very much because when you're in a Rover, you're just really down among them; you're down in this rolling, hummocky terrain. It was different."]

121:54:22 Parker: How about a range and bearing, guys, I think we can help you.

121:54:27 Cernan: Okay, 330, 0.3.

121:54:34 Parker: Okay, it sounds like you're probably just driving by the East Trident or Trident 3.

[They are about 200 meters northeast of the rim of East Trident and have not yet learned to judge the sizes of craters.]
121:54:45 Schmitt: You think all that right there is Trident?

121:54:47 Cernan: My god, if it is, that's incredible. That's hard to believe.

121:54:51 Schmitt: Well, there...You're going to go in a hole with your right...No problem.

121:54:55 Cernan: I can't see the lip too well because of the...

121:54:59 Schmitt: Well, if that's Trident...

121:55:01 Parker: Okay. And, Jack, do you have your camera on...

121:55:03 Schmitt: Boy, I wish they'd caught me with this (charge before I got on the Rover)...

121:55:04 Parker: ...If so, could you give me a frame count some time?

121:55:08 Schmitt: Bob, I got my hands full with this charge.

121:55:11 Parker: Oh, okay, forgot about that one. Sorry about that.

121:55:19 Schmitt: Looks like four-five (45 frames).

121:55:22 Parker: Okay, copy that. Thank you. (Long Pause)

121:55:32 Schmitt: Boy, if that's Trident, whoo!

121:55:35 Cernan: Hey, you know that is...Don't you suppose that's Trident?

121:55:37 Schmitt: Well, it sure looks like it, doesn't it?

121:55:40 Cernan: Yeah. We were quite a ways from Trident.

[They are now near the east rim of East Trident.]
121:55:43 Schmitt: I bet you it is.

121:55:45 Cernan: If that's true... We're at 342/0.4. That's about right; we're half a mile (means "kilometer")...That's about right. Boy, what I was looking at (as) Trident isn't anywhere near that big.

[East Trident is about 300 meters across while Poppie is about 70m.]
121:55:54 Schmitt: Okay, if that's true, then we want to go...

121:55:57 Cernan: Yes, sir.

121:55:58 Schmitt: ...we want to go 181.

[As per LMP-28, they want to be driving south on a heading of 181 degrees.]
121:56:01 Cernan: Yes, sir, we're all right now. That's got to be Trident. What we were looking at before...I've got to stop and see what that is. I've got to look at those maps when we get in (the LM after the EVA).

121:56:12 Schmitt: Well, it's a triplet all right, with some septum between. (Pause) Well, wish I could take pictures. Take a few, but...

121:56:26 Cernan: Well, let me get a few here.

[At this point, Jack may be taking AS17-136-20727 and Gene may be taking AS17-134-20390. During the next few minutes of the drive, Jack will take seven photos, AS17-136-20728 to 20734, and Gene will add AS17-134-20391 and 20392. In successive frames, individual boulders can sometimes be tracked as Gene and Jack drive toward them. However, on this traverse, Jack takes so few frames that the coverage of the drive is spotty. Note that most of Jack's picture's have the horizon tilted down to the left, probably as a result of the way Jack is sitting or of the way his RCU-mounted camera is tilted.]

[All the frames Jack and Gene take during the drive to Station 1 are displayed in the PDF document ( 16 Mb ).] [A "septum" is a dividing wall or membrane, such as the nasal tissue that separates the two human nostrils. Here, Jack is probably describing an area where the three craters don't quite overlap, leaving a bit of ground which is more or less level with the original surface.]

121:56:29 Schmitt: Well, you keep pressing. We can get them coming back. (Pause) (I can) take a few, but it's not continuous. My hands are giving out. I wish I hadn't said "follow the checklist". (Pause)

121:56:52 Schmitt: Okay, we're at 0.5 and 346. And the surface has not really changed except slightly more hummocky and rolling, because of a larger number of irregular depressions or craters. The...Boom! (They've hit a small crater.) The rocks at first glance from the Rover look very much like what we had around the LM. That's the big ones.

121:57:21 Parker: And, 17, you might be...

121:57:22 Schmitt: There are occasional...

121:57:22 Parker: Jack, you might be expecting water flag and a tone in a couple of minutes, to go to Aux.

121:57:30 Schmitt: Okay.

[The main feedwater tank contained about 8.5 pounds of water, and the auxiliary tank 3.4 pounds. They are nearly 5 hours into the EVA and will close the LM hatch at 7 hours 12 minutes, each with about one pound of water remaining. The time they take to use up the main supply depends, of course, both on how quickly they are expending water and on the amount of water they had in the tank to start with. The accompanying table details relevant information about feed water usage derived from the Apollo 17 Mission Report.

Crewman/EVA CDR/1 CDR/2 CDR/3 LMP/1 LMP/2 LMP/3

Charge (lbs) 12.19 12.79 12.79 12.12 12.72 12.72

Usage (lbs) 11.23 10.20 11.36 10.86 10.10 11.52

Time on Cooling 7:05 7:30 7:09 7:06 7:31 7:09

Rate (lbs/hr) 1.59 1.36 1.59 1.53 1.34 1.61

Metabolic rate 1090 821 929 1074 835 942

Time to Tone 4:58 6:30 5:45 4:53 6:28 5:33]

121:57:34 Parker: And CDR('s tone) will be about 5 minutes after that.

121:57:36 Cernan: I'll get stopped here in a minute, Jack; as soon as I get...(Listens) Okay.

121:57:42 Schmitt: Okay. I think maybe that might be Steno over there...

121:57:45 Cernan: I don't think we're too far off.

121:57:47 Schmitt: Okay, there's my...I've got to go to Aux.

121:57:49 Cernan: Can you reach it?

121:57:50 Schmitt: I hope so. (Pause)

[The control is on the bottom of the PLSS and there is a cut-out in the seat so that Jack can reach it.]
121:58:08 Schmitt: Okay, Houston, do you see me in Aux?

121:58:12 Parker: Stand by. Roger. We see you in Aux.

121:58:21 Cernan: I'm going to hit some of these (craters) broadside, Jack, and then we won't get any roll angle. (Pause)

[Gene has decided that up-and-down motion (pitch) is more acceptable than side-to-side motion (roll).]
121:58:27 Schmitt: Okay, how far have you come?

121:58:30 Cernan: (Consulting CDR-26) I've got to go about another 0.7 kilometers. I may be coming up on the edge of it. I don't know, I'm on the right bearing. Yeah, we're all right. Steno has got a dimple on the north. Boy, this is a heck of a way to start out our navigation because it's into the cross-Sun here...Not cross-Sun, but (into the) Sun. Now, that's got to be Powell, wouldn't you say?

121:58:58 Schmitt: Yeah. Must be. Must be.

[The nearest rim of Powell is about 0.5 kilometers southwest of their present location.]
121:59:01 Cernan: Listen, you...

121:59:02 Schmitt: Then that's Steno with all the blocks in it.

121:59:04 Cernan: Boy, am I glad we didn't land out here! Whew!

121:59:07 Schmitt: See this high point up here coming ahead?

121:59:09 Cernan: Yeah.

121:59:10 Schmitt: That should give us our bearings, I hope. (Pause) I can't hold that bomb any longer.

121:59:16 Cernan: What are you going to do with it?

121:59:17 Schmitt: I'm going to drop it at my feet.

121:59:19 Cernan: Okay. Okay, it's there. Keep it between your feet.

[Gene can see the charge at Jack's feet. Because of the bulk of his suit, the RCU, and the camera, Jack certainly can't see it.]
121:59:21 Schmitt: I will. My hands aren't going to be any good for sampling.

121:59:29 Cernan: Okay, that's Powell, huh? (Long Pause while Jack looks at the map)

121:59:47 Schmitt: Yes. (Pause) Okay, if that's Powell...Quite a ways over there, but I think the thing to do is get up on that little ridge there.

[The ridge is shown in AS17-136- 20735 and 20736.]

[All the frames Jack and Gene take during the drive to Station 1 are displayed in the PDF document ( 16 Mb ).]

122:00:05 Cernan: Yeah; I think we may end up looking right into Steno when we get up there. Bob, we're at 342/0.9.

122:00:13 Parker: Okay. Copy that. 340 and one point...(Stops to listen to Gene)

122:00:18 Cernan: Are you reading the low gain, by the way?

122:00:19 Parker: Yeah. Roger. Beautiful. 340 and 1.2 is where we expect the station to be. (Pause)

[This would actually put the station very close to the west base of the Steno "dimple".]
122:00:30 Parker: And it should be up on the top of a little bit of a rise. That you see coming up there. Almost to that rise. You ought to be in the vicinity of some very large boulders.

122:00:45 Schmitt: Houston, (pause as he listens to Bob) there are certainly a lot of big boulders...Whoop!

122:00:54 Cernan: Let me take a look into the Sun (east) here. That doesn't look what I thought Steno looked like. There's no dimple there. "One-point-two", he said. All right. This is it over here, though, I guess.

122:01:06 Parker: Yeah, Steno ought to be right at your 9 o'clock there, Gene.

122:01:15 Cernan: At my 9 o'clock. Yeah.

[The nine o'clock position relative to their current direction of travel is east. Steno is actually southeast of them.]
122:01:18 Parker: Either that or your 3 o'clock. I forgot which one it is.

122:01:19 Cernan: (To Bob) How do you know where we are? I think you're probably right, although it doesn't impress me as what I saw in the L&A (Landing and Ascent).

[The L&A facilty was housed next to the LM simulator and contained a large, ceiling-mounted model of the landing site . A TV camera on the floor beneath the model moved in response to crew inputs and provided a landing-site view either in the windows of the LM simulator or on a monitor on an LRV mockup.]

[Cernan - "This is another reference to simulations where we used the L&A to fly the LM around our landing site to see what these places looked like from maybe 50 or 100 feet above the surface. But there were obvious differences. In the simulator you didn't have the Sun problem and you couldn't get right down on the surface like you could in the Rover. From 50 or 100 feet in the air, things look grossly different and that's what I'm referring to here."]

122:01:30 Schmitt: How much time have we got to drive now, Bob?

122:01:33 Parker: Okay, stand by.

122:01:34 Cernan: I think that's probably Emory up there. That's Steno, I guess.

122:01:42 Parker: Yeah. Gene and Jack, we'd like you to...If you're in the vicinity, we think you're just about there. We were planning on you leaving the SEP and getting to this place at about 4 plus 58 (since depressurization) and we're showing about 5 plus 00 right now so you're right on time. And if you're at 340 and 1.2 in that vicinity, you must be at the station or very close to it where you can see. Over.

122:02:09 Schmitt: Well, it doesn't look real familiar, Bob, as far as Steno's concerned.

122:02:13 Cernan: Okay, I got (my tone and water flag)...

122:02:14 Schmitt: I think they can locate us if we work that block field right there.

[They will park about 150 meters short of the Steno rim, at about the 11 o'clock position on the rim relative to the 12 o'clock north that Bob will use in his next transmission. As with Shepard and Mitchell on their climb to Cone Crater on Apollo 14, Gene and Jack won't actually get a look into Steno Crater, but they will sample boulders ejected from the crater. Their stopping place is on the right edge of AS17-136- 20737. When Jack says "they can locate us", he is noting that the Station location can be pinpointed in post-flight analysis of the pans they will take once they stop and get to work.]

[All the frames Jack and Gene take during the drive to Station 1 are displayed in the PDF document ( 16 Mb ).]

122:02:18 Cernan: Let me get my water.

122:02:19 Parker: Okay, on the map, Jack, that you're probably looking at, you're seeing that, with north being 12 o'clock, there are a couple of boulders at about the 09:30 position on Steno. And then there's a couple of more at about the 9 o'clock position on Steno. And we're putting the station right in the midst of all those boulders. Over.

[From this, we can estimate that Houston thinks the SEP transmitter is roughly 200 meters west and 300 meters south of its actual location. Bob's remarks have been slightly edited for clarity.]
122:02:45 Schmitt: Well, Bob, I don't know. It's hard to follow that that's where we are. I'm not sure. It doesn't look like what I expected Steno to look like.

122:02:54 Cernan: No, me neither.

122:02:56 Parker: Okay. What's the range and bearing one more time?

122:03:03 Cernan: Okay, 346/1.1.

122:03:05 Schmitt: I think it would almost be worth...

122:03:09 Cernan: I bet that's Emory up on that hill. (Pause; brief static as Gene turns) It's got to be. Yep.

[Emory Crater is south of them, about another kilometer.]
122:03:25 Schmitt: Okay, well, let's...

122:03:27 Cernan: We better park in this boulder field here. Get in this boulder field.

122:03:33 Schmitt: I wish we could have gotten near one of the big ones (that is, near the big boulders Bob has been talking about), but let's do it. We're going to run out of time.

122:03:37 Cernan: Yep.

[AS17-136- 20738 and AS17-134-20393 are taken - in that order - as they maneuver to park at what they will call Station 1, despite the changed location. A labeled detail from the July 2009 LROC image of the landing site shows the location of Station 1.]
122:03:38 Parker: That's affirmative, guys...

122:03:39 Cernan: (Garbled under Bob)

122:03:40 Cernan: Okay. You want me...

122:03:40 Parker: ... There's no point in deviating around and spending 15 minutes trying to get a particular spot or down to a bigger boulder. You must be in the near vicinity. If you're really worried about it, I guess you might drive a little bit to the east to the rim of the...

122:03:51 Schmitt: Okay. We got...

122:03:52 Parker: ... crater, unless you're there. Over. Your judgment.

122:03:55 Schmitt: No, we're okay. We got a good place.

122:03:58 Parker: All right.

122:04:01 Cernan: Okay, I'm parked 180 (facing south as per CDR-27).

122:04:07 Parker: Roger. Stand by on that a minute.

122:04:12 Cernan: You want us to get off? What do you mean?

122:04:13 Parker: Okay. No...

122:04:14 Schmitt: What heading?

122:04:15 Parker: ...Okay. I was just wondering about where you were going to park. Go ahead and park 180. There was a question on whether they wanted us to park into the Sun, but don't worry.

122:04:22 Cernan: Okay, I'm heading...

122:04:24 Parker: 180 is a good heading.

122:04:27 Cernan: Okay, I'm headed 182, 346 (bearing back to the LM), 1.2 (distance driven), 1.1 (range to the SEP transmitter), 110, 108 (amp-hours remaining on each of the two batteries), 100, and 118 (battery temperatures), and off-scale-low on all of the motors.

122:04:51 Parker: Okay. I copy that. (Pause)

[They are about 150 meters from the Steno rim.]
122:04:54 Schmitt: Bob, can we deploy...(Long Pause)

122:05:08 Schmitt: Okay. (To Bob) You want this charge deployed here?

122:05:11 Parker: That's affirmative, Jack:

122:05:13 Schmitt: I'll deploy it now.

122:05:14 Parker: You can deploy it right now. That's good. (Pause)

[There are eight seismic charges in all, differing only in the amount of high explosive each contains and the preset runout time of the mechanical timers. This package, number six, contains 454 grams of explosive. There are three pins which must be pulled to activate the charge and prepare it to act on a fire signal from the LSPE antenna that Jack deployed near the Central Station.]
122:05:25 Cernan: Okay, the fenders are still on, thank goodness.

122:05:27 Parker: Beautiful. We'll give you the Taper of the Year award.

122:05:33 Cernan: Boy, you're going to have to give me the Duster of the Year Award after this.

122:05:40 Schmitt: Pin 1, (static) 2. Mark, Safe. (Pause) Pin 3. Mark, Safe. (Pause) That will be in the pans, Geno.

122:05:54 Cernan: Okay.

[Jack means that there will be no need to take locator photographs specifically for the charge deployment; the charge will be visible in a pan planned for the end of the station. Note that Jack was supposed to have taken a pan at this point but, for some reason doesn't take it until 122:32:50. Those photos are AS17-136- 20744 to 20776 and show the site, the charge, and the Rover parking orientation.]
122:05:55 Parker: Okay, I copy that.

122:05:57 Cernan: Bob, you got Mode (static)...

[Gene is turning on the TV.]
122:05:59 Parker: Just to confirm that is EP-6, right? (No answer) 17, Houston. Do you read? (Pause)

122:06:16 Schmitt: Okay, Bob; we're about 15 meters from a 20-meter (diameter) blocky-rimmed crater. It's about 3 to 4 meters deep. All the blocks on the rim look like the pyroxene/plagioclase gabbro - the vesicular rock - (static) seen at the LM. At least all that I've seen so far.

MP3 Audio Clip ( 15 min 40 sec )

122:06:50 Parker: Okay. I copied that, Jack. And is this crater to the east or west?

122:07:01 Schmitt: It's to the northwest of the Rover.

122:07:04 Parker: Okay; copy that.

[Figure 6-102 from the Apollo 17 Preliminary Science Report is a planimetric map of Station 1.]


Deep Core Apollo 17 Journal Geology Station 1 near Steno Crater