Day 73–Short Travel Day

January 16, 2012 10:37pm

January 16, 2012

S86°19.533 W087°08.814

Elevation 6094 feet

Waiting for the winds is like being on alert for combat: you know they’re coming. You just don’t know when, or how much. So we sit in the tent, resting, reading or writing, always an ear out for a sign of change. Invariably, sound will announce its approach. The gentle flapping of the tent’s walls, or a distant low whistle will faintly be heard. Typically, a gust will more firmly shake the tent. “They’re coming,” one of us might say, mentally readying for another sortie. The lack of regularity can reap havoc on the mind. We have taken to sleeping whenever the winds are down, which means that we turn the clock randomly following their whims. So much so that, with the twenty four hours of daylight, it can get confusing figuring whether we are on AM time or PM; the clock’s face works on twelve hour cycles. Eric is a sleep specialist: he will go down wherever, whenever. I have never seen anything quite like it! I have had more trouble with this wanton rhythm, and spend a lot of time writing, tossing and turning, and alert for change. This morning, the winds manifested, finally. Though they were weak, and short lived. Motivating to get out and work with light winds, at this stage of the trip, is measured only against our eagerness to put some miles behind us, and complete the mission.

But we did get out. Surprisingly, the temps were on the chilly side, and for the first time in at least two weeks, my toes were feeling it. I say surprisingly because we have been seriously dropping in elevation–we are more than six thousand feet below the POI! However, the terrain was remarkably smooth, and the snow quite soft. Today was a milestone for our trip as we passed the 3000 kilometers mark. We flew downwind with big guns and managed to close 71 kilometers before the wind completely shut down and forced us to set up camp, after merely three hours of travel. The forecast is not great: weak winds out of the east for tomorrow. We are now 714 kilometers from Hercules Inlet and have eight days to close it. It could be close…

4 Responses to “Day 73–Short Travel Day”

  1. Penelope Casadesus says:

    Yeah! Getting closer to the end! Great, anyway, to have done 3,000 miles! Congratulations!
    All love, your mother xxx ooo xxx

  2. Sylke says:

    Everyday I’m so excited to read your newest message. So it is good to hear you passed the 3000 km mark. Sending you perfect wind conditions for the last 714 km. Good luck!
    Sylke xxx

  3. BASILE says:

    So close now… and 3000 km behind you!!! CONGRATULATIONS! And good luck for the rest.
    B 🙂

  4. Stephane Planchon says:

    May the wind be with you !!!
    Cheers from Paris

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