Changes at Camp 7

Since the last blog entry there have been a few changes. The weather is still generally good, although it has turned cloudier – meaning Daragh’s i-pod can’t always charge from solar power – and the wind has also picked up. Snow now needs to be shovelled regularly when the team are in camp, to avoid it building up on the outside of the tents. When we spoke on Monday, Daragh had just come inside from doing this in temperatures below -30, or -45 degrees including wind-chill factor!

The team have now travelled more than 250 kms across physically challenging conditions of hard and tightly packed snow. Having struggled with the distances involved each day and the cold, over the weekend Jill chose to leave the expedition and be airlifted back to base camp. This must have been a difficult decision for everyone, and on Monday the team were holding their position until a plane could be despatched. All are fine.

In the meantime, location co-ordinates show that they had re-routed several degrees to the west following unconfirmed reports of potentially crevassed areas ahead of them, provided by pilots in the area. This means they are giving the ice-stream an even wider berth (see Quick Geography Lesson below if that doesn’t make sense).

- AH