Mike and I started our day with an invigorating swim. Even though the wide lead of open water beyond our camp had frozen during the night, new movement had opened a new lead of 20 m. After a short swim, we reached firm ice.
We’ve walked nine hours today on excellent ice. The air has been milky white, snowing and cloudy. The thermometer shows –23?C, which is pretty mild, but I assure the northwesterly wind gives a wind factor equalling a far colder temperature. We packed ourselves in with warm clothes and didn’t have any problems.
The physical distance we’ve skied is more than 16 km, but our GPS reveals that our net progress is only 10 km. We are drifting 500 metres per hour south, due to the 5 m per second wind from northwest. Our weatherman tells us to expect two more days like this.
Tomorrow we’re taking a day of rest, only our second since the expedition started four weeks ago. I think it’s a good idea to take a break while the weather is miserable anyways – so this Sunday we’re going to let our bodies rest and build up our reserves.
We’re camped by a new lead that is at least 200 or 300 m wide. We can’t really tell, because our headlights don’t reach far enough to illuminate anything on the other side. Our GPS coordinates are N83?39’58”, E103?20’41”. With the strong southerly ice drift, I’m sure our position will be very different when we start walking again Monday morning.
Dinner is ready – a tasty lamb stew for me, while Mike is having cod with leeks, both dishes accompanied by mashed potatoes. I stick to meat, alternating between lamb, pork, reindeer and beef. The food is excellent, the high point of a hard day.View 1 comments