100 years ago today the Amundsen expedition made it to the geographic South Pole (90°S) a whole 34 days before the British expedition. Bryony and the team are well on their way to reaching the pole by the 17th January, a century after the First British explorer managed the same feat.
The one difference between these historic expeditions and the present day is the ability for the team to be supported while out there, by means of re-supplies. The original explorers would have to pull sleds with far greater weights, carrying food and equipment needed for the journey there and back; though they were often assisted by dogs or horses.
The team located and dug-up their first resupply on the 11th. While Bryony and Lisa decanted food and began the arduous task of repacking the sleds, Oskar dug a snow pit within the largest of the tents and prepared a meal fit for polar explorer royalty, a steak dinner with mashed potato and gravy! In fact, the team now has too much food, with Ronnie’s rations remaining in the re-supply. Bryony told me this while drinking hot chocolate and eating an extra bar of Lindt chocolate, which has all “been a nice change from the drytech food; we get a cooked meal every day until the next resupply now!”
This has meant heavy times for Bryony and the team, with their packs increasing by 20kg or more; above their initial weight. Things didn’t get any better when the team started skiing again, after Bryony spilt soup down her Anorak, freezing, and trapping her inside the jacket! With assistance from Dennis, she was freed and they set off again; only for one of Bryony’s skins (used to ski uphill without sliding backwards) to break 5 minutes later! The next day, after some repairs; the binding of one of her skis broke, meaning another short delay. She told me she was getting the bad luck out of the way nice and early!
All repairs aside Bryony and the team are doing well (if a little tired with the extra weight) and are on track to beat the record, passing 83°S in the first hour of today’s skiing; not far now!