Extremely happy with how today went, with two consecutive days of best distances covered. Today eas just what I needed. This time, all in the right direction!
Got up a little bit later than I wanted. Spasms in my shoulders and neck kept waking me up, but the new supply of painkillers soon helped! I left the tent at around 8.30am. While it was a little cloudy, it soon brightened and became perfectly clear with that normal stiff southwesterly wind coming towards and across me.
I am splitting my day into two. The first four ski sessions before lunch (a rehydrated meal in a thermos, instead of my snacks that i normally have after each session). Each lasting 75 minutes. The four sessions after lunch are just 60 minutes each. Each break between session lasts between 5-10 minutes max. Any longer and you start to cool down more than you should. You just need to eat and drink water: get the calories in, and get moving again. But back to the point… I have increased the length of the morning sessions to see how I get on: I did that yesterday and today. And both times I felt good and comfortable with it. Managed 14km by lunch yesterday and 15km today. I felt like I could have done the same for the afternoon sessions but didn’t want to overdo it. Just a shame that yesterday was spoilt by the “issue” with the resupply. (Ed…. Understatement by Ben!!)
In the afternoon, I was definitely helped by the good visibility. I am in the middle of the biggest sastrugi maze I have ever seen! And they’re BIG sastrugi! (To adapt words from The Fifth Element… Big badda sastrugi!). I think I should rename them “Monstrugi”! Huge!!! It’s difficult to take pictures as there is nothing to contextualize them with. There are plenty that are at least a metre and a half tall. Also, I was helped by the snow being nice and hard. All the loose swampy snow from a few days ago as all been blown around and compacted. Hopefully it stays like this for a while!
So all of this helped me to get my best day yet. A real nice confidence builder especially after the chat with Antarctic Steve and understanding what expeditions would be expected to do at this stage. I just now need to sustain this over the next… hummm… 28 days! Not toooooo long to go!
santa in Antarctca
In the tent now – I will chat a little bit about tent routine tomorrow as have gone on a bit now! To celebrate, considering popular demand, I got the Santa’s hat out, and nice to celebrate to have a vodka chocolate liquor, together with Christmas songs playing on the phone! I imagine everyone back home is getting into the Christmas spirit…?!)
Please support Ben’s chosen charity Cancer Research UK https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/ben-weber1
Visit Ben’s blog site to hear Ben’s audio diary from his overnight camp. https://polarweber.com/