The night at the DYE radar station was cold indeed. -40 degrees celcius.
Before setting off today, we had to wait for the Americans who are practicing landings and take-offs out here with the Hercules aircraft. Of all the places in the world, this is where we are told to wait before we can continue..
The good thing however is that the Americans gave us some food in exchange for the delay: oranges, bread and toppings. We now have food until the 10th of May.
We have to discuss with our mentor Lars whether or not this is enough though. For now, we continue east and hope for the best:)
A long Walk in sunny conditions today. Despite applying sunscreen several times, we both ended up like lobsters in the end:)
Late in the evening, we reached the DYE 2 Cold War radar station. This abandoned building is really fascinating with a creepy, ghostly feel. We did some aerials of the whole station using the drone. The drone, that we luckily did NOT leave behind on the 2nd day:)
Looking to become a calm but cold night.
Short update from Greenland. A lot of snow (loose) today, and whiteout conditions. Can’t see the contours of the terrain, only white all over. We walked for 10 hours, and now at camp, we have 20 km left to DYE. Tormorrow we will try to reach that target.
We are continously checking the amount of food we have left, vs. the distance we need to cover in order to reach the east side. Numbers at not adding completely up, but we cross our fingers for some improved wheather, and winds that could enable some ski sailing. We could need that now.. So long! 🙂
So, that was a rather rough night! 30m/s + winds, felt like we were sitting inside a laundry dryer… Luckily the snow wall gave good shelter, and everything was ok with the tent. (yes, we did go out in the middle of the night to check the ropes and all:)
In the morning the winds calmed down a little, and we managed to pack the things and cover some 12 kms south east during the day. We have camped, and we are given details on the weather situation from our mentor Lars Ebbesen. It seems that we need to push towards east using every calm hour of the day, as the winds will increase again. We hope to use the ski sail when the winds are in the right direction to gain some badly needed distance:)
Sunday we managed to cover a decent distance. However, the storm seems to build up quite a bit. We are being given good advice from our mentor Lars back in Norway, via iridium sat phone. Just now, Monday evening, winds are at 20m/s outside the tent. And it is expected that it will increase during the night.. We have built a wall of snow in front of the tent to provide some protection. Also, we have set the sleds in a v-formation, giving additional shealter.
Based on the weather forecast, we will probably by staying in camp for two days. This is not positive with respect to the overall distance we have left, but we hope to do some ski-sailing in between the strong winds.
For now, all we can to do is to rest inside our sleeping bags and wait for the storm to pass.
Today we covered 20km, so we are slowly increasing the pace. Conditions were difficult with a great deal of wind.
Now we are in camp, and the weather is calm with -18 degrees celcius. Beautiful sunset!
The coming storm is luckily not as bad as forcasted earlier. We have reach an alevation of 1674 MASL, and we are 72km away from DYE. Can we reach it in 3 days?..
The below image shows our current position in a broad perspective:)
We are continuing on our path! We have tried the skisails today Friday. It was not possible to turn upwind due to difficult condition. But we hope for better luck the next days.
The inreach GPS system is up and running to some degree. The below images show our trail on Thursday. Today we are 90km west of the DYE station.
Also, check out our radio-interview via sat phone the other day here: https://radio.nrk.no/serie/distriktsprogram-hordaland/DKHO02007817/19-04-2017#t=2h32m58s
The two last days have been quite windy, with 20 m/s down in the “valley”, while 30m/s winds are reported further up. We have covered around 14-15 kms a day and we are getting more and more intop of the glacier, rather than being in the “ice stream”. Due to the low temperatures of below -20 degrees celcius, there is a lot of friction between the pulk and the icy snow, this keeps the pace down a little.
Vertical: Right now we are 1300 meters above sea level, MASL. We will continue to climb slowly but surely, until we reach approx 2500 MASL which is the level of the glacier plateau.
Horizontal: We are ca 130km away from one of the DYE stations that we are aiming for. These “cold war” US long range radar systems is resting ontop of the glacier and have not been in use since the late 80’s. Instead they have been serving as weather stations and core drilling facilities in later years.
Other than some heavy nausea during last night for Bjørn, we are feeling fine and all is well. Looking forward to reach the top, and to increse the pace.
Despite having 15 m/s of head wind all the way, this was a good day for us. We took advantage of the snow as we could take shortcuts and move in a straight line. In total we covered 14kms. Also, we are finally on to the skis.
We met some Swedes out here! We were invited inside their tent and exchanged sat phone numbers and gifts . They stayed in camp today due to the winds, and commented that only Norwegians keep walking in this weather… In exchange of some home made marzipan, we received an energizing 1 kg of pure butter:) Cooking dinner in our own camp this evening, we rewarded ourselves with a good chunk of butter in the casserole. That was a real treat!
We are expecting 20m/s or more of wind tomorrow, but we are moving more and more into the snowy part of the glacier rather then crevasses and ridges.
Today we walked for 9 hours, covering 12 kms in up-hill terrain. Slowly but surely, we are getting in the right direction. It seems we are passed the most challenging type of terrain, where everything is just up and down. However, we do need to pay attention to the various crevasses that can be anywhere. We are following the ridges, and try to stay close to where the actual ice is sticking up from the snow.
The weather was nice and sunny today, and temperature as high as 5-6 below zero (celsius) midday, while dropping to around 20 below zero in the evening/morning.
In below figure, you ca see our current position. Spirits are high, and we are looking forward to continue to increase the pace, and to reach the top of the glacier.