Around the world... the hard way...

Posts in category Polar Survival Training

Day 7 – Back to base

Day 7 – Back to base

After the successful completion of the goals of Day 6, we were a little tired but felt good. We only had 4km to go to get back to Northwinds and meet with Sarah and Matty again. The conditions stayed perfect and this proved to be nice and easy, even with a bit of a sleep […]

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Day 6 – 10 nautical miles!

Day 6 – 10 nautical miles!

The distance of 10 nautical miles (about 18.5km) in one day is a bit of a benchmark for polar expeditions. To be able to get to the South Pole in particular, teams consistently need to travel over such distances day after day in order to make it there before their supplies run out and the […]

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Day 5 – Arctic swimming lessons!

Day 5 – Arctic swimming lessons!

After the preceding day of 14km over the ice we had a bit of a slower day today as we would spend the morning and early afternoon practicing protective measures against bears (flares and rifles), and … swimming. Basically we were at an area where the tidal currents are so strong that the ice does not […]

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Back up on our feet – Mini expedition days 3 and 4

Back up on our feet – Mini expedition days 3 and 4

After the difficult day on the ice the previous day, the winds did not relent overnight and it was decided in the morning that, with the winds and low visibility, we would take a weather-day: stay in the tent until the winds calmed down. In truth, both Natalia and I were grateful that the winds […]

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Serious thinking to be done. Mini-expedition, Day 2

Serious thinking to be done. Mini-expedition, Day 2

Looking back over the training with the McNairs, and this day was definitely the most intense, hardest and thought provoking. It was the worst day for me, and not so good for Natalia either, and at the end of it we even questioned ourselves about how cut-out we are for this whole project and dream […]

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The mini-training expedition – Day 1

The mini-training expedition – Day 1

One of the final tasks before the end of the training with Matty and Sarah and before our planned larger expedition to Auyuittuq, was a six-day mini-expedition during which we would spend half the time with Sarah accompanying us and the rest by ourselves, with one other group member, Simon Foster – a photographer who […]

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Obstacle courses through the ice

Obstacle courses through the ice

So the training continued, with the GPS day bringing us back down to earth, especially in regard to the difficulties in the extreme polar environment. We continued our intensive learning in Iqaluit, hauling our pulks out into rough ice and practicing pulling them over pressure ridges… Pressure ridges in the ice are caused by the […]

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Not always good days… technology suffering in the arctic chill

Not always good days… technology suffering in the arctic chill

We went into the training with plenty of confidence – probably partly due to having so little experience in the conditions, we were confident in our ability to adapt. Rightly so, as time has proved in our favor, though we certainly had difficult days. One such day was when we started navigation skills and learning […]

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Polar Survival – “if you sweat, you die!”

Polar Survival – “if you sweat, you die!”

Matty and Sarah would repeat the “if you sweat, you die” phrase to us over and over again during the training course. It is absolutely the most important thing to keep in your mind when on expeditions in the polar environment. Basically, even when it is -40C outside, the body produces its own heat. Even […]

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The Polar Training

The Polar Training

A good couple of months ago, Natalia and I began our polar survival training with Sarah and Matty McNair-Landry, in Iqaluit, Canada. The itnerary of the months, after our previous ten days crash cross-country skiing training in Winnipeg: two weeks training with the McNairs, to be followed by a week of kite-skiing; three weeks (or […]

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