Mike and I are now at N88°00’23”, E89°26’04”. This has been one of the very toughest days of our expedition.
The day started with temperatures of –34°C, and we had the wind against us all day. When we called it quits, the thermometer showed –37°C. We’re taking such a beating from this wind that we simply can’t continue in this tempo. The two of us are just getting more and more tired, more and more exhausted, as the chilling wind sucks away all our strength. We’ve been for 10 hours today.
We have promised to do our best – and that’s what we’re doing. However, that also means taking care of ourselves and minding our health. Mike is suffering new frostbite damage on his fingertips, which now have cracked open. My feet aren’t getting warm and I have pains in my right heel, no doubt after walking long distances and long hours with little pause.
We simply have to let go of the idea of reaching the North Pole in a hurry, be sensible in this extreme weather, and make safe decisions. There is still a long ways to go. Tomorrow we’re falling back into a less strenuous routine, settling for 10 hours walking, and no longer stretching the day beyond 24 hours. We simply can’t walk 12 hours and make do with 6 hours sleep when the weather is fighting us. We have to have the weather on our side if we’re to push that hard – and the winds and weather are definitely not. It’s against us, and according to the forecast we can expect northerly winds and chilly temperatures all week. So that’s why we’re calming down our pace.
N88° has been one of the hardest yet – and this day one of the toughest. We’re exhausted, but are pleased that we only have two degrees of latitude left.
The most goal of this expedition is to reach the North Pole in a sensible way. The great difficulties and major challenges are behind us. Now we have to mind our well being. If the weather suddenly improves, we can make an extra effort. Otherwise we’re going to continue at a normal pace.
We’re both exhausted and hope to soon be asleep.View 5 comments