Last night a handful of skiers boarded an Antonov 74 at Svalbard airport and flew the three hour journey into Barneo and temperatures of minus 27 C. Unpacked, kit ready to go, we have a quick brief and were flown out onto the ice. Conditions have deteriorated and the many open stretches of water now make achieving the full two degrees unlikely. Instead the distance will be 1 degree and twenty minutes (about 90 miles).
I am disappointed, but this change reflects the fragile nature of the arctic ice.
After a short ski of one and a half hours, we put up tents and caught up on much needed sleep.
This morning I had porridge and butter for breakfast, a hot toddy and chocolate. Bliss.
Today's ski will be broken down into four one and a half hour sessions, the aim being to cover about fifteen kilometres.
Aside from the landing and watching the helicopter leave yesterday, one of the most amazing aspects of this place is the utter silence and Covina the North Pole. There is an almost perfect nothingness that pervades the atmosphere (bar the polar bear tracks detected by the guide, Audun).
Sad to say, even the sound of skis on ice is like a pollutant in this serene place.
On that note, I will leave you to your thoughts.
Next update in a few days times.