Apollo 15 Lunar Surface Journal

Above the Rover at Station 6

Corrected Transcript and Commentary Copyright © 1996 by Eric M. Jones.
All rights reserved.
Scan and panorama assembly credits in the Image Library.
Video credits in the Video Library.
Except where noted, audio clips by David Shaffer.
Last revised 9 October 2014.

MP3 Audio Clip ( 5 min 48 sec )

143:54:33 Scott: Jim, when you get out, be very careful you don't fall backwards.

143:54:36 Irwin: Okay.

[The eastern portion of Jim's second Station 6 pan shows the steep angle - approximately 11 degrees - at which the Rover is parked. According to the Apollo 15 Preliminary Science Report, Station 6 is 90 to 100 meters above the mare surface.]

[Scott - "That's a pretty interesting picture, 'cause I'm standing vertical, gravity aligned, and you can see the Rover back there, tilted."]

143:54:37 Scott: Hey, Jim? Jim! Hold.

143:54:38 Irwin: Yeah. I'm holding on.

143:54:39 Scott: Be careful you don't go backwards, now.

143:54:42 Irwin: Yeah.

143:54:43 Scott: We're on a steep slope.

[Scott - "Our mobility on the side of the mountain was reduced because it was very soft stuff. One of the things we found that was quite interesting is you can learn a lot from walking, even with a pressure suit on. Of course, you know that anyway on the Earth. But, on the Moon, in particular, because it's a new area, if you walk you can learn a lot about what's under your feet. I mean, that's obvious. It's trivial, isn't it? But it's not trivial, because I can start telling you something about the soil mechanics as soon as I hop off the Rover. Because I'm already sensitized to that. I've done that all my life, when I walk."]
143:54:44 Scott: Your (seat)belt's caught. Just a minute. (Pause) Just a minute.

143:54:48 Irwin: Okay.

143:54:49 Scott: Hold on there. By golly, Joe. This Rover is remarkable! I'm telling you, we have climbed a steep hill, and we didn't even really realize it! And, we were going like 10 clicks up this hill, and we're on a slope of...

143:55:03 Irwin: It must be at least...

143:55:05 Scott: Oh, 8 degrees or so?

143:55:06 Irwin: 8 to 10 degrees.

143:55:07 Scott: 8 to 10 degrees. And we can look back and see the whole...We can see the LM just as loud and clear as can be.

143:55:14 Irwin: Isn't it great.

[Photo AS15-84- 11324, which Dave takes with the 500-mm lens at 144:50:48, shows the LM from Station 6. Pluton Crater is in the background; and Dune Crater is in the foreground. The range to the far rim of Dune is 2 km, while the LM is 5 km away, and the large boulders on the north wall of Pluton are about 8 kilometers away. The LM is 7 meters tall and, consequently, the largest boulders visible in Dune are about 3 meters across and the largest ones visible in Pluton are about 10 meters across. This is Dave's favorite Apollo 15 photo.]
143:55:15 Scott: Gosh, I'll tell you, this Rover is really something! (Pause) Look at that.

143:55:26 Irwin: Oh, Boy! Okay. I'll take a pan.

143:55:29 Scott: And, Joe, when the TV comes on, you're going to get a super picture.

143:55:34 Allen: Yes, sir. We're standing by.

143:55:39 Scott: Okay. Going FM/TV, now. (Burst of static)

143:55:47 Allen: Okay, Dave. And we may ask you to dust our TV lens off. We'll ask you to stand by for a reading on that. (Long Pause)

[On Apollo 16 and 17, the crews dusted the TV lens at every stop. Houston will request that Dave and Jim brush the lens at the end of this stop, at 144:41:42.]
143:56:05 Allen: And, Rover, do you read Houston?

143:56:08 Scott: Yeah, we read you, Joe. What did you...We'll stand by for you. You read us okay?

143:56:15 Allen: Yes, sir. You're loud and clear. And we're standing by for the picture.

143:56:21 Scott: Yeah. I have to get the antenna aligned. It's going to take a little bit here. (Burst of static)

143:56:27 Allen: Roger. And just proceed with caution.

143:56:29 Scott: Sure. (Laughing) I don't know why...(Responding to Joe) Yeah. I don't know why we always end up on slopes.

[Jim's photo AS15-85- 11493 shows Dave pointing the high-gain antenna.]

[Jones - "I gather that, generally, you tried to park the Rover so that you could stand in front of it to sight the high-gain? I gather that it was tough to sight it while you were on a slope."]

[Scott - "It was very difficult to move around, 'cause it was so soft, for one thing."]

[Dave's heart rate on arrival at this station was in the low 80s and will rise slowly into the low 90s. Jim's heart rate was about 80 on arrival but quickly rose to about 100 and peaked at 130 beats-per-minute at about 144:41 as he finishes his climb back up to the Rover from the Station 6 crater.]

143:56:37 Irwin: You know, I want to take a picture upslope, Dave, but I can't. I can't get the camera pointed up that way.
[The camera is mounted on a bracket on Jim's chest-mounted RCU and, to take an uphill picture, he would have to lean so far back that he might well fall over backwards.]
143:56:47 Allen: Just do the best you can on that, Jim. No problem.
[Jim's first Station 6 pan (assembly by Dave Byrne) consists of frames AS15-85- 11481 to 11497. Jim is standing on a slope and, while bending back to raise the camera to get the horizon, may have moved slightly while taking the first frame, 11481, which shows both Hill 305 and the rille in the distance.]

[Frame AS15-85- 11487 shows the now-sunlit western face of Mt. Hadley. The lineations visible on the mountain are generally believed to be a lighting effect due to the long shadows cast by small-scale undulations at this very-low sun angle. In the foreground we can see the tracks made by the Rover as Dave and Jim approached Station 6. The tracks enter the picture at left center, cross to center below the foreground crater and then up hill to the final parking place.]

Frame11488 is centered on Mt. Hadley.]

[Frame 11489 shows Mt. Hadley, the Swann Range, and, in the foreground, the inbound Rover tracks.]

[Frame 11491 shows the views across the Rover seats and the handcontroller toward the Swann Range.]

[In frame 11492, Dave is at his side of the Rover. There is a set of individual sample bags hanging from the bottom of his camera. We can see the traverse maps hooked to the accessory staff.]

[In frame 11493, Dave is adjusting the high-gain antenna. The TV camera is still pointed down.]

[Frame 11494 shows the view over the front of the Rover. Notice that the footprints in front of the Rover are only slightly indented.]

[In frame 11496, note that Jim did not get complete coverage up the slope of Hadley Delta because of the near impossibility of leaning back far enough to aim the camera toward the summit of the mountain.]

143:56:53 Scott: (To Joe) Okay. You must have the (TV) picture now, or at least the antenna is pointed.

143:57 01 Allen: Okay, Dave. We've got the data. And we're working on the picture.

143:57 07 Scott: Okay. And do you want a dust...Okay, do you want a dust job? (Pause)

Video Clip   2 min 46 sec ( 0.7 Mb RealVideo or 25 Mb MPG )

[TV on. Fendell moves the camera slightly clockwise, even though it is pointed down at the right-front wheel.]
143:57:17 Allen: Standby on the dust job.

143:57:18 Irwin: (Probably noticing the TV camera motion) They're starting to move it now.

143:57:20 Scott: Okay (Responding to Joe) Okay. Well, we're going to leave (that is, move away from) the Rover here and that's why I wondered.

143:57:27 Allen: Okay, fine. (Pause)

143:57:37 Irwin: Boy, what a view. Huh?

143:57:38 Scott: It's something.

143:57:39 Irwin: Boy!

143:57:41 Scott: Spectacular! (Pause)

143:57:49 Allen: And do we have a picture down here!

143:57:52 Scott: Hey, you couldn't, Joe, because the camera is pointed straight down.

143:57:56 Allen: Rog. It's a close-up of the Rover wheel. (Dave and Jim laugh) And, it's still smoking.

143:58:01 Scott: Oh.

143:58:04 Irwin: Huh?

143:58:07 Scott: Okay, Jim. Let's get on with seeing what's here at the front.

143:58:12 Irwin: I'm with you.

143:58:13 Scott: Okay. Let's go up first, so we can come downhill (after sampling). And, there's one of those fresh little craters.

143:58:16 Irwin: Yeah.

143:58:17 Scott: Let's go sample that one. (Pause) Got glass in the bottom. (Long Pause)

[Fendell raises the camera and starts a counter-clockwise pan.]
143:58:56 Irwin: (Dave chuckles) I never thought we'd have a problem like this on the Moon - like we do on field trips - trying to maintain our balance.

143:59 05 Scott: Yeah, I never did either!

[Jones - "I gather that, on the field trips, you were in shirtsleeves, but were wearing backpacks. Were those backpacks heavy enough to create a balance problem? Is that what Jim's talking about?"]

[Scott - "I'm not sure. Those training packs weren't that heavy; but they did change your distribution. That's probably what he's referencing."]

143:59:10 Irwin: Oh, boy.

143:59:12 Scott: It's a nice little crater, isn't it?

143:59:14 Irwin: It sure is. (Long Pause)

[Dave and Jim are sampling a small crater uphill from the Rover at Station 6. They position the gnomon down-Sun of the crater. Dave takes AS15-86- 11609, a cross-Sun "before", from uphill (south). Dave then steps to his right to take 11610 and, finally, turns slightly to his right to take 11611.]

[Meanwhile, Jim takes three down-Sun "before" photos. He takes AS15-85-11498 at the wrong f-stop. He then notices his error and takes 11499. As can be seen in detail Dave is moving his right foot forward as he goes to plant the tongs in the ground, which he does before Jim takes 11500. Jim stepped to his right between 11499 and 500. In the latter of these, Dave has his right foot raised and may be stepping to his right to take the second of his stereo cross-Suns, 11610.]

143:59:31 Scott: Okay. I'll get you a bag. And, it looks to me like the best thing to do would be to scoop the side...scoop the center (of the crater) where the glass is.

Video Clip   2 min 12 sec ( 0.6 Mb RealVideo or 20 Mb MPG )

[Fendell pans past Dave and Jim, who are southeast and uphill of the Rover, partially lost in a sunlight reflection off the side of the camera barrel. Dave is standing uphill of the crater and Jim is about 5 meters east of it, probably just finishing up his down-Sun pictures.]
143:59:46 Scott: Oh, what a beautiful sight! You know, we're a long way from the LM. (Laughs)

143:59:51 Irwin: At least, we can see it!

143:59:53 Scott: Yeah.

143:59:54 Irwin: That's encouraging. (Pause) We never did remark on that very white crater out there northwest of the LM, did we?

[This may be the light-colored area just above the center line at the left edge of AS15-84- 11324.]

[Fendell reverses direction, centers the image on Dave and Jim, and zooms in. Dave comes around to the east side of the crater while Jim is on the north side with the scoop. Dave's tongs are stuck in the ground to the right of the gnomon. The picture is very grainy.]

144:00:03 Scott: No, I don't think we did. It's really, really white though, isn't it? Okay, I've got your bag, and it's number 16(3).

144:00:09 Irwin: Okay, and we're going to sample the glass in the middle of it?

144:00:12 Scott: Yeah. Start with the middle, and we'll pick up the rim, too. 163.

144:00:17 Allen: Copy 163.

[While Jim gets a sample of the glass with the scoop, Dave bends his right knee and gets the bag as low as he can.]
MP3 Audio Clip ( 18 min 10 sec )

144:00:23 Irwin: See how it's all kind of welded together.

144:00:25 Scott: Yeah. (Pause)

144:00:29 Irwin: More?

144:00:30 Scott: Yeah, get me another load.

144:00:33 Irwin: I hope it stays together for us.

[Jim gets a second scoop load.]
144:00:35 Scott: Yeah. That's good.

144:00:37 Irwin: Like fragments all glued together. What an intricate pattern.

144:00:45 Scott: Good. That's dandy. Okay. (Long Pause)

[Dave closes the sample bag and then, while still holding it, gets a second bag, opens it, and reaches down with it in his right hand to get the next sample.]
144:00:58 Scott: Get you another one.

144:01:00 Allen: Okay, Dave. And is that still bag number 163?

144:01:04 Scott: Yeah. The next one coming up is 164. (To Jim) And, why don't you scoop the rim there, Jim. (Pause as Jim pours the first scoopful of rim soil)

144:01:20 Irwin: A little more?

144:01:21 Scott: Yeah, let's get a good bag full. (To Joe, while Jim gets a second scoopful of soil) Okay, Joe. It's very fine, light gray; the rim is. Very fine. (Pause) There. Can you hold this one, and I'll "Z" the other one. (Pause)

[Dave comes down to Jim and gives him sample bag 163. The sample bags have a metal strip running across the top, with tabs on either end. To seal the bag, Dave folds one tab across each side in a Z-like pattern. Figure 82 in Judy Allton's Apollo Tool Book shows tabs at the tops of the bags ]
144:01:44 Irwin: TV coming in good now, Joe?

144:01:50 Allen: Roger, Jim. We've got a beautiful picture. We're trying to look into the Sun at the moment, somewhat unsuccessfully. But the TV's working beautifully.

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[Fendell is pulling back on the zoom.]
144:02:00 Irwin: You ought to look up toward...You ought to look up toward Mount Hadley. You can see that linear pattern.

144:02:13 Allen: Rog. We'll take a look, and thanks for the recommendation.

144:02:15 Scott: Oops. (Pause)

[Dave has moved to the uphill side of the crater to take cross-Sun "afters" AS15-86- 11612 to 11615. Fendell pans clockwise.]
144:02:22 Scott: Okay, Jim. Let's find ourselves a couple of frags down here. (Pause) Here's a...There are three within easy range over here. (Pause) Frags show up pretty good down-Sun, don't they?

144:02:39 Irwin: Uh huh. (Pause)

144:02:43 Scott: Okay. Let's see. Hate to go after some little ones but...(Pause) Right there in front of you, Jim. That big one.

144:02:54 Irwin: Okay.

144:02:55 Scott: Let's get that one. (Long Pause)

[They have moved the gnomon a short distance west of their first sample site in order to collect some small rock fragments. Once again, Dave took cross-Sun "befores" from upslope (south). Frames AS15-86- 11616 and 11617 are a stereopair. Frame 11618 is a "locator" which shows the location of the sample site relative to the Rover and, in this case, also the North Complex in the background. The small, fresh crater with fragmental debris on its rim - probably soil compacted in the impact and, therefore, called regolith breccia or instant rock - is also visible in 11617. Finally, 11619 and 11620 show Hadley Rille. Uncharacteristically, Dave seems not to have taken an "after" of this sample site.]

[Jim's down-Sun "befores" of the second Station 6 sample site are AS15-85- 11501 and 11502. He stepped back and to his right between frames.]

144:03:28 Allen: Okay, Jim. And are you still scooping samples?

144:03:35 Irwin: We're sampling a rock right now. (Pause)

144:03:44 Allen: Roger.

144:03:44 Scott: (Lost under Joe)

144:03:45 Allen: And, we know you're picking up the representative ones.

144:03:47 Irwin: Give me a...(Responding to Joe) Yeah. (Pause) And the number on this bag is 188.

144:04:00 Allen: Roger, Jim. Copy 188.

[Fendell has reached his clockwise stop. The western half of Mt. Hadley is visible over Jim's seat but, unfortunately, the linear pattern is not discernible.]
144:04:05 Allen: And have you noticed a variety of rock types or just one general kind?

144:04:09 Scott: Okay. Let us go through them, Joe, as we pick them up, because we can't tell any difference as they sit on the surface. They're all covered with dust. And, the first one here is a fine-grained breccia, a microbreccia. And, it looks like a third order with white clasts in it. The matrix is dark black, and it has glass within a fracture on the side. Not unlike some of the 14s (meaning the Apollo 14 samples)

144:04:36 Allen: Roger.

Video Clip   2 min 49 sec ( 0.7 Mb RealVideo or 25 Mb MPG )

[Fendell has begun to pan counter-clockwise.]
144:04:38 Irwin: Want to put some soil in?

144:04:40 Scott: Get that other frag right next to it, Jim. Here let me. I'll get it. Okay, good boy. (Pause) And, Joe, the soil is very powdery here.

144:04:55 Allen: Roger. Copy, Dave.

144:04:56 Scott: Okay, this looks the same. (But we'll collect it) just for drill here. (Pause)

144:05:03 Scott: Okay. Same thing. Same kind of fragment. Frangible (which means "easily broken"). Okay. Why don't you give me the bag, and why don't you take a little scoop (of soil) right there by the side of the...

144:05:16 Irwin: Okay.

144:05:17 Scott: Where those two were. (Long Pause)

[Dave and Jim come into view. They are now directly uphill of the Rover and, although there is still reflected light interfering with the TV picture, much more detail is visible.]
144:05:30 Scott: Wait. Can you get it?
[Jim is too far below Dave to pour soil in the bag.]
144:05:32 Irwin: I got to get back uphill. (Pause) I've got most of it, I think.
[After they both made slight adjustments in their relative positions, Jim gets the soil poured. Dave closes the bag.]
144:05:43 Scott: That's good. That's fine. (Pause) Okay, 188, to confirm again.

144:05:54 Allen: Roger. (Pause)

[Jim sidesteps to his right so that Dave can put the sample bag in SCB mounted on the right side of Jim's PLSS.]
144:06:04 Scott: Okay.

144:06:05 Irwin: Dave, there's one upslope with a flat side?

144:06:07 Scott: Yeah.

144:06:08 Irwin: Maybe we could take that back as a large one? (Pause) Do you want to wait until we get over to a fresh crater?

[Dave has started uphill with the gnomon. Fendell starts to pan right.]
144:06:17 Scott: Let's wait until we get to a fresh crater.

144:06:19 Irwin: Okay.

144:06:20 Scott: See if we can get some more typical...Here's one down here to your right.

[Just as Fendell's pan takes Dave out of view, Dave turns to his right and moves west.]
144:06:24 Irwin: Yeah. I see it, too.

144:06:26 Scott: Let's just make a little circle around the old Rover here and find some variety. (Long Pause) Get it (probably meaning the down-Sun "befores")?

144:07:12 Irwin: Yeah.

[Jim's down-Sun stereophotos of the third sample site are AS15-85- 11503 and 11504. In 11503, note that the gnomon is far from vertical, and, in all likelihood, is still swinging. Dave has probably just put it in position and is scuffing dirt with his right foot as he backs away. Jim stepped to his right between frames.]

[Dave's cross-Sun stereophotos are AS15-86- 11621 and 11622. Note the deep footprints that Dave made when he positioned the gnomon.]

Video Clip   2 min 58 sec ( 0.8 Mb RealVideo or 27 Mb MPG )

[Fendell reaches the counter-clockwise limit of his pan and is looking over the top of the console at a pair of tongs on the back of the Rover.]
144:07:14 Scott: Okay. (Pause) Okay; this is a fairly large subangular fragment, which is about 20 percent buried. I'm not sure we'll get that in the bag! (Pause)

144:07 28 Irwin: I don't think we will, Dave.

[This sample is 15298, a 1.7 kg microbreccia. the Dave's "after" photo, 11622, indicates that Dave's estimate of 20-percent burial was about right.]
144:07 30 Scott: Well, we've got it anyway. See what it looks like here. Ah ha! On the bottom...That looks like (pause) a light-gray microbreccia with some white clast of millimeter size in it, and that's about all. And, the bottom side has slickensides.
[Slickensides are grooved or smoothed surfaces usually formed by friction, as on the two sides of a fault plane.]

[Fendell raises his aim and, past the 16-mm camera lens, we can see the lower slopes of Mt. Hadley at maximum zoom. He then pans to the right but, because of the reflected light reaching the lens, little detail is visible.]

144:07:54 Scott: And I do see some glass spattered on one side. And I also see one little, looks like an orange crystal in there, like it might be a little piece of olivine. It's got definite reddish-orange color to it.

144:08:11 Allen: Okay. Beautiful!

[Jones - "I thought olivine was green."]

[Scott - "It is. Definitely green. I'm trying to find something that it would be. It had a reddish-orange color to it, and what I'm looking for is some descriptive term that's close. I mean, you don't see any terrestrial rocks with (that color)...Well, lowencopey and some of the sedimentary rocks in the Grand Canyon (are reddish orange), but (in lunar rocks) you really don't see much orange."]

["What we're looking for is something excavated from deep (in the mountain). Olivine is normally deep (that is, it forms under pressure at depth), so we're looking for it. And we've seen a lot of olivine and dunite and all that stuff (meaning minerals that form only at elevated pressures) in our training, because it's important, obviously, to recognize them if they are there. So we're tuned, we're sort of keyed to try to locate olivine. So, if you've got a mind set that says 'Maybe there's some here', and you look at something that's orangish or greenish, it's sort of a 'hopeful' olivine."]

["And you can tell Schmitt sometime, 'Yeah, you found orange, (but not until after Dave Scott found orange at Hadley).'"]

[One of the most important discoveries of Apollo 17 was a deposit of orange soil at Shorty Crater, a clear sign of "fire-fountain" activity at the time the mare lavas were deposited. Dave's orange material is not related but, rather, is evidence of a particular mineralogy.]

144:08:12 Scott: Get the ("after") picture before I step in it. (Pause)
[Dave's cross-Sun "after" of the third sample site is AS15-86- 11623. Note the reddish-orange color of the transmitted light in the shadow of the individual sample bag Jim is holding.]
144:08:20 Scott: Okay. See if we can get this in a...Oop...

144:08:23 Irwin: I'm sorry. Do you want to try putting it in the bag?

144:08:25 Scott: Yeah. This is definitely a different kind of breccia, Joe. It's only got light-gray millimeter- size clasts in it, with a fine-grained, gray matrix. And the clasts, there are about, gee, I'd say 10 percent of the total frag. So it's somewhat different. Here, I can hold it with both hands, if you can stick it in. Let me hold the bag.

144:08 51 Irwin: Got the bag?

144:08 52 Scott: See if you can get the thing in there. (Pause) Watch my helmet with your...Okay. I've got...

144:09 06 Irwin: I don't think we will make it, Dave.

144:09 07 Scott: I don't think so either. I got it. Let go, let go. (Chuckling) You're pulling me downhill. (Pause) Okay. That's going in your collection bag as a single. And, I think you can remember it, Joe. (To Jim) Sorry about the bag; it just fell. I let it go. (To Joe) It's got slickensides on it.

144:09:25 Allen: Roger, Dave.

[Fendell is examining the Swann Range at an azimuth, there isn't much of a reflected light problem because of the particular arrangement of reflectors on the front of the Rover.]

[Scott - "The guys in the Backroom are just going bananas, looking at this stuff."]

[Jones - "Fendell's looking at a big crater on the lower hills of the Swann Range."]

[Scott - "Yeah. And there's a lot to look at and listen to, all at the same time."]

144:09:34 Scott: Okay, Jimbo. (Pause) Just keep going around the old Rover here, and see if we can find another interesting looking one. (Pause) (To Joe) As you can see, probably, with the TV, Joe, there just isn't much in the way of debris around here. It's all...(Pause)

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144:10:00 Allen: Roger, Dave. We agree. Good description and...

144:10:02 Scott: ... Hey, there's one!

144:10:03 Allen: ...we might set you out a little later looking for a fresh crater that's brought up some frags for us.

144:10:12 Scott: (Responding to Joe) Okay. (To Jim) Jim, there's one sitting on top of this little crater over here. Reckon you can get over here to it.

144:10:18 Irwin: Yeah. I was trying to recover that bag, but I gave up on it.

144:10:20 Scott: Oh, we got plenty of bags. Don't sweat the bags, we got more than we'll ever need.

[Fendell resumes his clockwise pan, getting occasional views of the Swann Range in gaps in the reflected light pattern.]
144:10:27 Allen: And, Jim, on your pan, were you able to sweep around the full 360 degrees?

144:10:27 Scott: Here's another one (garbled).

144:10:30 Irwin: Oh, you sink in here...(Stops to listen to Joe) Yeah.

144:10:35 Allen: Okay.

144:10:36 Irwin: Yeah, I have a pan. I'll take another one probably before we leave the area, so you get a little stereo effect.

144:10:42 Allen: Beautiful. We've got film to burn.

144:10:44 Scott: Oh, this is an interesting one, I think.

144:10:48 Irwin: As you can tell, we sink in about 2 or 3 inches...

144:10:52 Allen: Roger.

144:10:52 Irwin: ...in this material.

144:10:54 Scott: Jim, I would say that this fragment here hit right before its position. You see that little spot? See that little spot right there in front?

144:11:07 Irwin: Yeah!

144:11:08 Scott: I think that rock hit there.

144:11:10 Irwin: Yeah. You can convince me of that.

144:11:13 Scott: And it...We'll just have to take a look at it, when we get the ("before") pictures here. Wonder from whence it came. If it did hit there it was traveling...

144:11:25 Irwin: Traveling west.

144:11:26 Scott: Yeah. East to west, and it left a little mark about a foot from its present position. And its present position is on the surface. It's about 4 inches, subangular. And we'll pick it up and take a look at it. As a matter of fact, I'll see if I can't get a close-up of the little spot that it hit here. Well, if I can lean down. (Pause)

[Fendell finds Dave and Jim working southwest of the Rover. Dave seems to be leaning on his tongs in order to get some close-up photos.]
144:11:54 Scott: Okay. Did you get the down-Sun, Jim?

144:11:56 Irwin: Yeah. (Pause)

[Dave's cross-Sun "befores" of the fourth Station 6 sample site are AS15-86- 11624 and 11625. Both were taken from the north (downhill) side of the sample, with Dave stepping to his left between frames.]

[In 11624, the up-Sun gnomon leg, the one with the color/gray scale, is just north of the rock they will collect. The rock was traveling from east to west (left to right) - undoubtedly at very low speed - and hit first at the upper left. It continued toward top center, and then rolled downhill a short way to its final place. In 11625, the initial impact point is at the left.]

[Dave's close-ups of the impact crater made by the fourth station 6 sample are AS15-86- 11626 and 11627. Dave used his tongs to get his distance right for good focus but either was moving because he was having trouble keeping his balance as he tried to lean forward on the soft, soil-covered slope or had the focus set incorrectly.]

[Jim's down-Sun "befores" of the fourth Station 6 sample site are AS15-85- 11505 and 11506. In 11505, Dave is on the downhill side of the gnomon. He has his tongs in hand and we can see individual sample bags hanging from the bottom of his camera. In 11506, Dave is probably looking at the impressions that the rock made as it moved from east to west to its final resting place.]

[The sample taken from this spot is 15299 which, according to the Preliminary Science Report, is a 1.69 kg "breccia with glassy surface".]

144:12:02 Scott: Now, I'll pick it up. (Dave grunts) That stuff (meaning the soil) is really soft.
[While balancing on the tongs, which he has in his left hand, Dave leans into the hill and attempts to get the rock with his right hand. He fails and, then, has to scramble to stand.]

[Scott - "When I had to, I bent down to pick them up."]

[Jones - "Of course, you're on a pretty steep slope, and you're leaning into it, which makes it a lot easier."]

[Scott - "Oh, yeah. Except for standing in the soft stuff."]

144:12:11 Irwin: Yeah; let me get it with the scoop.

144:12:13 Scott: That a boy.

144:12:14 Irwin: I'll try. (Pause) I'll throw it up, and you catch it.

144:12:22 Scott: (With) any luck at all.

[The rock is about the size of two fists held together. Jim gets the rock in his scoop, which he is holding in his left hand. As he raises scoop and turns to his right to get the rock within Dave's reach, it falls off the scoop. Because the rock is noticeably bigger than the scoop head, it is difficult to control.]

[Fendell has zoomed in on them.]

QuickTime Video Clip ( 1 min 22 sec )

144:12:26 Irwin: Oop. (Pause) (Switching hands) (I'd better use my) right hand here.

144:12:34 Scott: Easy does it. (Pause)

[Jim is standing sideways, below the rock, facing east. He has his left foot downhill and is leaning to his right to get down to the rock. The rock is hidden from our view by a small ridge but it is clear that Jim is having trouble getting the rock seated on the scoop head.]
144:12:47 Scott: (Moving to the west side of the rock) Okay. Let me get down...Let me use my tongs to pick it up.

144:12:50 Irwin: I've got it.

Video Clip   3 min 01 sec ( 0.8 Mb RealVideo or 27 Mb MPG )

[Jim raises the rock vertically, this time making sure that he doesn't impart any sideways motions that would dislodge it from its precarious perch on the scoop head.]
144:12:51 Scott: Okay; good. Good. Okay, hold it right there.
[Dave plants his tongs so that he can use both hands to grab the rock.]
144:12:57 Scott: Up a little more.
[Jim raises the rock about 6 inches (15 cm) and Dave grabs it with both hands.]
144:13:00 Scott: I got it. (Pause)
[Because of the camera protruding from his RCU, Dave can't raise the rock to his face plate while holding it in both hands. He cradles the rock in his right hand, lifts it above the camera, and then re-establishes a firm, two-handed grip so that he doesn't drop the rock while he examines it. He turns to his left, probably so that he is facing away from the Sun and can get some direct sunlight on the rock. He stumbles slightly as he turns, but catches himself with relative ease.]
144:13:06 Scott: (As he stumbles) Ah! (Pause as he recovers his balance) Well, it's really covered (with dust). But it's a very rough surface; very sharp; basically a subangular rock, but with quite a jagged, craggy surface on it. And I can see some spots in there. I guess I'd just have to call it a breccia.
[While Dave examines the rock, Jim plants his scoop, takes a sample bag off his camera, and gets the bag ready to receive the rock.]
144:13:33 Scott: It'll never fit in there. Just let me put it in your bag (meaning Jim's SCB).

144:13:35 Irwin: Okay.

[Dave goes to Jim's right side to put the sample in the SCB.]
144:13:37 Scott: And I think we have it fairly well documented. It's in collection bag (SCB) number 3, which will help you keep track of it.

144:13:45 Allen: Okay, Dave. Thank you.

[Dave does not change voice level or tone when he talks to Joe, a fact that forces the listener to rely on context to determine who he is talking to.]
144:13:47 Scott: They (meaning the rocks in the area)'re either big ones, or they're little small ones. (Pause)
[Dave heads uphill, grabbing his tongs as he goes by. He is undoubtedly going to take an "after" of the original resting place of the rock and then retrieve the gnomon.]
144:13:56 Scott: Okay; got the picture.
[Dave's cross-Sun "after" of the fourth sample site is AS15-86- 11628.]
144:13:58 Irwin: There's a crater over to the west, Dave, that has a very light albedo that's...

144:14:02 Scott: Yeah, let's head that way with the Rover when we get going.

144:14:05 Irwin: Okay.

144:14:06 Allen: Okay. Dave and Jim, when...

144:14:08 Scott: (Garbled under Joe) right here.

144:14:10 Allen: ...you reach a good stopping point, we've got a couple of questions.

[Dave has come downhill and somewhat toward the Rover. He stops and puts the gnomon down and gets into position to take "before" photos of sample he wants to collect.]
144:14:17 Irwin: While you're asking them, I think I'll take another pan.

144:14:20 Allen: Okay, Dave...(Correcting himself) Or, Jim. It sounds good...

144:14:22 Scott: Okay (garbled).

144:14:23 Allen: And, Dave, while he is doing that, could you tell us how far away and in what direction is the large block which you described?

[Behind Dave, Jim hasn't moved far from the spot where he picked up the rock. He seems to be looking for a place where he can stand to take the pan. In the foreground, Dave turns to look west toward the Station 6a boulder.]
144:14:33 Scott: Yeah, Joe. We intend to head in that direction. It's right now due west. It's probably, oh, 3/10ths of a kilometer or something. And I think it's on the same slope - maybe upslope a tad - from where we are now, but not too much. And on the way, there's a nice fresh light-albedo crater, maybe a couple of meters across. So maybe we ought to pick up those two (that is, stop at both places).
[Jim is taking his pan and, as he goes through north, we can see him change the f-stop setting.]

[The pan consists of frames AS15-85- 11507 to 11522.]

[In frame 11508, which shows the North Complex, the bright spot above and slightly to the left of the first fiducial above the center one is the area brightened by the LM Descent Engine.]

[Frame 11511 shows the apparent lineations on Mt. Hadley. In a moment, Dave and Jim will walk down to the crater that is below center and to the right in this picture.]

[The eastern portion (assembly by Mike Constantine) of the pan shows Dave facing uphill taking a stereopair of cross-Sun "befores" for the fifth Station 6 sample.]

[In frame 11514, Dave has his hand on the handle-mounted trigger. Note that Dave is standing slightly beyond a small crater. He has just taken AS15-86- 11629 and has stepped to his left to take 11630. Note the fan of dust that the motion of his left boot has sprayed to the east. Dave has the tongs in his left hand while he uses his right to take photographs. Note the steepness of the slope.]

[Jim's frame 11516 shows the path Dave and Jim followed as they have moved uphill from the Rover and then along the hillside from east to west, stopping every few meters to sample. The four patches of disturbed soil that represent the sampling sites are quite evident. See Figure 5-80, the Station 6 sketch map from the Apollo 15 Preliminary Science Report.]

[In frame 11518, we see that Jim is having trouble leaning back far enough to get the apparent summit of Mt. Hadley Delta in the picture and, for this frame, doesn't quite make it. Because of the troubles Jim is having, the uphill portion of the pan is not presented here.]

144:15:00 Allen: Okay. Copy. You can see, towards the west, a light-albedo fresh crater. As you look back towards...(Pause) Okay. Sounds good. We copy that. Thank you. (Pause)
[Dave is taking cross-Sun "befores" from north of the gnomon. These frames are AS15-86- 11629 and 11630.]
144:15:26 Allen: And, Dave, another question. Do you think this is a good area for a rake sample?

144:15:27 Irwin: About finished (the pan).

144:15:34 Scott: No, Joe. Definitely not.

144:15:36 Allen: Okay. Copy that.

144:15:37 Scott: There's nothing here. We'd...

144:15:42 Allen: Roger. We agree.

144:15:43 Scott: ...just be spinning our wheels.

[Dave sinks deep into a spot of very soft soil as he moves uphill toward the gnomon. Jim comes east and angles uphill to go around the gnomon.]
Video Clip   2 min 49 sec ( 0.7 Mb RealVideo or 25 Mb MPG )

144:15:45 Irwin: Let me swing around and get the down-Sun, Dave.

144:15:48 Scott: Here, let me get it. I'm in a better position, Jim. (Pause)

[Dave's down-Sun is AS15-86- 11631.]

144:16:01 Scott: Okay. You want to get a bag for me?

144:16:02 Irwin: (Lost under Joe)

144:16:01 Allen: Dave, do you think that that fresh crater you're looking at might be Spur Crater? We put your present position as halfway between Window and Spur.

144:16:14 Scott: No, I don't think...It's too small, Joe. I think we picked up Spur as we went by a little while ago. We saw it.

[While Jim opens a sample bag, Dave reaches forward with the tongs and grabs the sample.]
144:16:25 Allen: Okay. We agree with you exactly here, Dave and Jim. And we want you, when you leave this station, to move back towards the west. In other words, towards the direction of the rille, and looking especially for fresh craters.

144:16:43 Scott: (Answering Joe while he examines the sample) Okay, Joe. Okay; (it's) another little microbreccia. (Pause)

[Dave reaches down with the tongs to get another sample.]
144:16:54 Irwin: Bag number is 190.

144:16:57 Scott: Okay. (Pause)

[Dave walks over to Jim and, from context, probably gives him the first sample to bag.]
144:17: Scott: Let me take another look at this other one here. (Pause as Dave examines the second sample) Oh, boy! Look at the bottom of that, Jim.

144:17:15 Irwin: All glassy, isn't it?

144:17:17 Scott: Yeah, a whole...Glass all over the bottom of that one. And it looks like another microbreccia. And I don't see any pits in any of these, at all. I do see a couple of glass...Well, yeah; this one's got a couple of very small glass-filled pits, but most of them are pitless.

[After showing the rock to Jim and completing his examination, Dave drops it in the bag Jim has been holding open.]
144:17:35 Scott: Okay; (into bag) 190.
[Rocks sitting on the surface are occasionally hit by small, high-velocity particles which create small, glass-lined craters on the rock surface. By the time of Apollo 17, these tiny rock craters were known as zap-pits. In a 1996 letter, Dave said that he thought the term came into use after either Apollo 11 or 12; nonetheless, the term wasn't used on the Moon until 17.]
144:17:37 Irwin: Want me to put any soil in it?

144:17:39 Allen: (Responding to Dave) Roger. 190.

144:17:39 Scott: (Answering Jim's question) No, I think we've got enough soil. It's typical. (Pause)

[Dave backs up and takes the cross-Sun "after", AS15-86- 11632, from the south. He took the cross-Sun 'befores' from the north.]
144:17:46 Scott: Okay, Joe. I took the down-Sun from a different side on this one... (Correcting himself) I mean the cross-Sun from a different side on this one, if you want to log that. Okay. You want to stick that in my bag (that is, Dave's SCB) and...

144:17:58 Irwin: Yeah.

[Dave heads toward Jim, reaches down to grab the gnomon on his way, and then presents the left side of his PLSS so that Jim can put bag 190 into Dave's SCB.]
144:17:59 Scott: Let's go down and take a look at this little crater right here. There's a little small crater, I guess you can see, Joe, at about 2 o'clock to the TV now. And...

144:18:10 Irwin: Dave, having trouble getting up it. (Pause)

[Jim is having trouble opening Dave's SCB, primarily because Dave is standing on a small ridge and Jim is on a slope. Indeed, Jim is treading dirt as he tries to reach Dave's SCB.]
144:18:21 Scott: Got it?

144:18:22 Irwin: No, I just got the bag opened.

144:18:24 Scott: Oh, really?

144:18:26 Irwin: You're up on a mound.

144:18:28 Scott: Well, let me get down! (Dave doesn't move) Okay?

144:18:33 Irwin: Got it.

144:18:34 Scott: Okay. (Pause)

[Dave heads out of the field-of-view to the right, headed toward a relatively large crater below the Rover. After a few seconds, Jim follows.]

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