We’re now within 83 degrees latitude, more precisely at N83?07’01”, E104?28’23”. After skiing 15 km today, and thanking the wind for another 2 km, we have 769 km left of our expedition.
We woke up to milder temperatures, only 26 degrees below, which is far more comfortable – although it chilled five or six degrees this afternoon.
It’s been a magnificent day! Like we’re on a different planet. The ice is amazing in the moonlight, an otherworldly landscape of jagged block ice. The moon has become our sun – I know that may sound strange – but its light is strong enough to show us our surroundings and allow us to navigate. And the moon is there all the time, merely moving in a circle in the sky.
There haven’t been any signs of animals, nor have we seen any open leads at all – and that’s good. We’re encountering more and more of the old Arctic ice, although right now we’re camped on a floe that is less than a year old. These days we’ve been passing through varying ice, but we certainly want to reach more continuous older ice as soon as possible; it’s thicker, more stable and far safer.
The last few days we’ve seen areas where tremendous forces have smashed the ice into blocks of various sizes. Even though the leads between the floes of new ice are frozen now, there is always the risk that they might reopen in stronger winds or currents. We would rather not be there when that happens, so we’re in a hurry to progress further north. Fortunately the southeasterly wind seems stable, and it’s pushing us in the right direction.View 1 comments