by Tyler Fish
A few days ago John and I were skiing very well, and in general we've been very pleased with our pace and our ability to ski with one another and as a team, and we were about to end our day at our typical 10 hour stopping time when we realized that we were only 2/10 of a mile away from 86° north latitude. So I suggested to John that we push on a little further, a little later and make 86° and feel really good about the day. And we discussed it and he agreed and so we did and we both felt like it was a really great decision to go that extra distance and feel like we had made a good day into a really wonderful day where we knew we could celebrate. So that was a way we made a good day great.
Today was a little different. After waking up today, taking care of some projects and getting going a little later in the day, we were surprised to see that our slate of travel was still very good. And as we skied, the terrain, which had been a little bit "heavy" we call it - a little up and down over the snow dunes, it got better and better and flatter and flatter. And actually towards the end of the day we encountered an old lead; perhaps about maybe a quarter mile wide and a few miles long, we're not quite sure. We started moving very quickly. And part way down that lead John and I pulled up next to each other and I kind of said, "You know, I'm sort of tired." And John agreed and he'd been thinking about that perhaps we should stop early one of these days and get some extra rest. And again we talked. We're very good at coming to mutual agreement on decisions and so we decided to stop early.
So instead of taking a day that would have probably been a distance record, we took a successful, great feeling day and ended it early. It's always been very important for me and John to do this expedition, not necessarily as quickly as possible, we just want to do it as well as possible. So we decided it was more important for us to take care of ourselves and be able to push the reset button.
So we're going to bed early tonight, plenty of sleep and we're assured some flat terrain to start with tomorrow and some good weather tomorrow and we feel like we're actually setting ourselves up for success. There are plenty of miles to go. That's it for now.
Daily Expedition Data
Date: April 5, 2009
Location: N86° 20.503' W074 53.617'
Time Traveled: 8 hours
Distance Traveled: 8.8 nautical miles
AM Temperature: -22°F
PM Temperature: -18°F
clear and sunny, slight breeze, SE puffs, faints clouds in PM
220 nautical miles to North Pole