Day 11 Storms, Sastrugi, Three Sails Mountains and stunning views!

14.5km/ 9miles

Last night… wow! That was a terrific storm. As expected, it reached its strongest from around 3-5am and it really was strong. Very happy with the tent – always felt very stable and no problems at all. I have doubled up the guy lines and the tent poles to increase its strength, and yup, all very steady in the midst of the tumult!

The winds did take some time to die down though. Normally I would start getting out my sleeping bag at around 7.30am but there was no point this morning as it was still way too bad. By midday they had eased a little; enough for me to start packing up but still they were strong enough to make life very hard putting the tent away! As I put all the bags into the sled the spindrift would get blown into my face making it hard to see, and into the sled, giving more unnecessary weight to it! By 1.15pm though I was ready to go.

The conditions from then on though continued to improve. Visibility was great so I could see all the sastrugi ahead of me and the winds calmed down further to, within a few hours, effectively just a gentle breeze. Still wind chill of -35C or so apparently though!! There was some uphill for the last few miles, but nothing very steep. The main concern, as it had been for the last week or so, was my neck. Definitely improving, though still uncomfortable. I still have to keep rotating and stretching it, and occasionally when I turn it to stretch I feel a wave of agony that forces an involuntary cry from my mouth… but it’s getting better. The worst is when I camp – maybe because am not moving it so much and it becomes stiffer. But fine… it’s tolerable!

Amazing views

The view from where I am camping tonight is incredible. I can see the mountains of the Horseshoe Valley and the Three Sails that I passed back in the distance… spectacular! I imagine this is the last night I will see them as I will get further away and there will only be flat white snow ahead of me and in every direction. The next mountains will be the Thiel Mountains in around 25 days… if all goes well. Until then… nothing!

Please support Ben’s chosen charity Cancer Research UK

Click on the tracker below to hear Ben’s audio diary from his overnight camp.

One thought on “Day 11 Storms, Sastrugi, Three Sails Mountains and stunning views!

  1. Hope the best for your neck. Happy see you are fulfilling your longtime desire to be there. Stay safe and warm!

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