The Svalbard Ski Expedition has finally begun! After a delayed flight (due to a medical emergency on board) the team gathered in Longyearbyen and sorted out all of their equipment. When we heard from them, everyone had just had dinner together and went over the expedition itinerary. The turnaround will be swift, as the team will leave Longyearbyen tomorrow morning. The first 40km leg will be by snowmobile, out of town to the starting point. From there the team will step into their skis and take the first of many strides across the Arctic landscape. Listen below to the audio update by Nick Stammers; it's obvious that this tightly knit team is going to have a lot of fun on the trail.
The Last Degree Ski team is getting a well deserved day of rest after their epic push to The Pole yesterday. This morning, they were picked up from their camping spot near the North Pole, and taken to the Barneo Ice Camp which provides logistical support for all of the expedition teams. They will spend the night there and plan to fly back to Longyearbyen tomorrow. In the mean time, the team will rest, celebrate, and mingle with the staff and other visitors at Barneo. Places like this often attract some very interesting people from all over the globe and our team will only add to the exciting mix. Stay tuned for an update from the team tomorrow once they have their feet firmly planted back on solid ground.
Photo sent from Keith team camped at the Geographic North Pole.
A HUGE congratulations (!!) to our North Pole Last Degree Ski Expedition for reaching the North Pole today despite very challenging conditions. They reached the North Pole at 8:53 PM local time after spending 12 hours on the go and covering a total of 15-16 miles. The team (Abdullah Alsaeed, Peter Cardwell, Abdulla Al Alahbabi, Zdenek Chvoj, Harvey Oyer and Keith Heger) are thrilled to have reached their goal. Here's a quick update of their day:
The Last Degree Expedition (Peter Cardwell, Zdenek Chvoj, Abdulla Al Alahbabi, Harvey Oyer, Abdullah Alaeed and Keith Heger) had a great day. They gained 2 nautical miles overnight (we can't emphasize how nice that is!!!) and they made an additional 10 miles during the day. Their current position is N89.48.335, E127.46. Team Fioretti Mountaineers are back in Longyearbyen enjoying the civilized life! Here's a recap of each of their days:
A huge congratulations to Peter, Bob and Eric for arriving at the Pole yesterday after a long push on their last day. Because of their early arrival they were able to get a helicopter transfer back to the basecamp and fly back to Longyearbyen several days ahead of their scheduled return. The helicopter picked them up at 11 AM local time this morning and brought them back to the Barneo Basecamp. They spent 45 minutes in Barneo before flying back to Longyearbyen (ah, civilization!). Now they are the comfort of their hotels, with plans for a nice dinner this evening. Well done! Here are some pictures from the last day.
It was a whirlwind of a day, especially for our North Pole Fliers who made a mad dash to the North Pole (and back) all in one day - not much sleep for them! Our skiers, on the other hand, got a good night's rest and had the added bonus of waking up a little farther north than where they had fallen asleep. Here's an update from each team: