by Tyler Fish
Hello. Today is March 3rd and John and I are on the Arctic Ocean. John and I got up today. It was chilly but we were feeling really good and we decided to give up the skis that we'd used the previous day. We saw some very jumbled ice basically right next to our camp so we decided not to ski and instead pull our pulks just on foot. And as it turns out, within 50 feet of camp with our first lead. It was frozen. It actually was the lead that indicates the separation of the Ward Hunt Ice Shelf from the Arctic Ocean.
So, we are on the Arctic Ocean. We walked right across that lead and continued on through the rubble. The rubble was quite a labyrinth, really. It was impossible to tell which way is the best way to go. There really is no best way. So we just make our way as we can. More or less in the direction we want to go sometimes more and sometimes less with some zig-zags here and there.
Couple years ago this expedition would have started off a little easier because the Ward Hunt Ice Shelf was bigger. It was longer. It stretched further out on to the ocean. But the Ward Hunt Ice Shelf broke off after so actually we were confronted with the rubble earlier this year than an expedition in previous years would have been. After about 15 meters of pulling both pulks through the rubble we opted to pull one pulk at a time. It was a lot easier to pull the small one forward instead of around and go back and get the big one and bring it to where the first smaller pulk was. Of course the disadvantage of this is that we have to do this three times the distance, which is probably why we only went .87 nautical miles today.
We're blessed with wonderfully calm weather. It actually been very pleasant and we agreed that our experience portaging canoes has helped us make it pleasant because we're very used to walking down the trail going back to get other items and then continuing to where our canoe sits. So we're feeling pretty good in fact numerous times today we've said to ourselves, "We're doing well now. We really feel good. We're going to make it". So we're pretty happy.
Tomorrow we're looking forward to another good day and, yes, hope all is well.
Daily Expedition Data
Date: March 3, 2009
Location: N83° 08.9' W074° 04'
Time Traveled: 5hrs 30min
Distance Traveled: .87 nm (1 nm = 1.19 statute miles)
AM Temperature: -42°F
PM Temperature: -30°F
Wind: Little to no wind
Total Distance to date: 2.57 nm
Distance to Pole: 413 nm