One thing I can say about ice mining is that it is never boring.
On Tuesday I went out ice mining because I had sold out my stock of liquid ozone. The situation looked favorable. The ice site had respawned out of d-scan range of two of the three star gates in system, with the third gate over 5 AU from the site. More importantly, I had celestials all around, meaning mining aligned was possible. Perfect!
Rosewalker scouted the site in his Hound, setting up a corporation bookmark at his perch and reported that the system was empty of ships. Wandering Rose then jumped into system, docked up and switched to her Procurer. After she warped to a nice chunk of glare crust and started mining, the situation changed. Local got busy.
I'll mine with neutrals in system. But when I see a Tengu on d-scan, that changes the equation just a bit. So Wandering Rose finished the cycle and warped back to the station with only 1000 m3 of ice, leaving Rosewalker to quietly observe the situation. Let's just say that was wise, as the PvPers were feeling frisky, although they hadn't scored any kills at the time.
After local died down, I resumed mining. One of the problems with ice mining is that the only way you get ice is if the ice harvester completes the cycle. That's why I preferr Procurer's and Skiff's in low sec, they finish their cycles much faster. But to improve that speed, I have to fit an ice harvester upgrade in the lows. That means either giving up tank (Damage Control II) or agility (nanofiber). With no guarantee the PvPers wouldn't return, I chose to go with align time over tank.
Not a problem, except that four rats, two of them cruiser class, spawned while Wandering Rose was mining. That's right, she was chased off by rats. Did I mention I hate the Angel Cartel? But their victory was short-lived as Rosewalker warped in and finished off the rats. But that's when the PvPers reappeared so he cloaked up after observing a Machariel on d-scan. Apparently I wasn't the only one as pilots from Calamitous-Intent and Merrill's Marauders dispatched a cyno-fit Ibis who tried to get close to the pirate battleship. I didn't see the combat but did see the pod warp to station. After that, local died down again.
I then took the opportunity to mine in piece, actually succeeding in filling up the ore hold with 12,000 m3 of sweet, sweet glare crust. But as I started to warp away, four more rats appeared in the site. Four rats just meant four more targets for Rosewalker, and he proceeded to dispach the Angels and returned to his perch overlooking the ice site.
Now, one thing about dead rats is that they leave wrecks. Not only are these wrecks very convenient for pilots who want to warp in and do violence to my poor Procurer, but not worth spending a torp or two to destroy. So when Wandering Rose warped back into the site, she launched drones and proceeded to start cleaning up the site. But she didn't get far. Remember that Ibis that was popped earlier? The pilot reshipped into a Vexor Navy Issue and decided he wanted to meet Wandering Rose.
But Wandering Rose is rather picky, and someone flying a faction cruiser in a factional warfare system isn't really that impressive. Except for the firepower. Of course, the firepower isn't that impressive if the ship lands 56 km away. Especially since she had swapped out the nanofiber for a Damage Control II after the embarrassing incident with the Angel Cartel earlier. The lack of agility didn't matter as she was already aligned to a distant customs office. The VNI landing so far away gave her plenty of time to retrieve her drones and warp off.
Apparently, the hint was too subtle and the VNI gave chase. But Wandering Rose isn't your average ice miner. Her other ship is a Prowler, and she has the implants to fly it properly. Holding a 3.45 AU to 3 AU warp speed advantage, she easily landed first and aligned for the station to dock up. To his credit, the VNI pilot did manage to land on grid, but I don't know how close as the faction cruiser was just coming out of warp as Wandering Rose warped away.
Meanwhile, Rosewalker remained at his perch overlooking the ice site, waiting for the inevitable. Sure enough, the VNI pilot came back to the belt and appeared to make a bookmark, awaiting Wandering Rose to return. Once that happened, I decided to wrap up the operation for the night. Twenty units of glare crust refines to 10,000 units of liquid ozone. Enough to justify making the trip to Bosena. So I refined the ice and moved out of the system.
As things turned out, I probably wouldn't have done too much more mining anyway. The PvPers returned, shots were fired and ships exploded. I didn't want to show up on any kill mails anyway.
Turning to market PvP, I decided to not price aggressively. My stockpile of liquid ozone depleted while I attended Fanfest, so I just matched the low price of 600 ISK/unit in the station in Bosena. I figured I'd just build up my stockpile and have a sell order out just in case. Imagine my surprise yesterday when I returned home and found all 10,000 units of liquid ozone sold. Time to do some more mining.