Still tough conditions for Cas and Jonesy
Published on 10.11.2011 - Cas & Jonesy : Crossing the Ice
Aussies Justin Jones and James Castrission have still to face difficult weather and terrain conditions.
On the 11th day of their trek, the australian pair has covered 118 km and is around 820 m above sea level.
Excerpts : "... Over the last few days, they have had some tough conditions to plough through. The all-day whiteouts (snowfall) mean that not only does navigation become more difficult, but a combination of fresh snow, and drifting snow (snow picked up by the winds), makes the ground soft, uneven, and very difficult to ski. Their pulks don’t slide over the soft snow patches, instead they sink. Very slow going.
While visibility cleared up yesterday, it was a slow day kilometre wise due to 50kph winds and lots of soft sastrugi. Cas and Jonesy covered less than 7 kilometres in their 6.5 hours of skiing. But slow progress is still progress (although sometimes it is difficult for the guys to accept this!).
Whether strong winds or low visibility, the guys are gutsy. When the weather turned a couple of days ago, it was only Cas and Jonesy, and the Norwegian, Gamme, who continued on their expeditions. All other teams stayed at their campsites and rode out the bad weather. ..."
Their equipment is holding up well, but there have been a couple of times where some man sewing has been required. Everything takes so much longer to complete in the cold temperatures. For instance, a rip in one of the tent flaps cost an hours work -would have been much quicker if they hadn’t needed to take so many breaks to warm up their hands!