Tough times for the Irishmen

Published on 25.12.2007 - Beyond Endurance

Expedition leader, Pat Falvey, has been injured. But his expedition is still continuing its trek towards the pole...

Bad weather continues to hamper the progress of Pat Falvey's expedition. On day 40 of the adventure, just as they had passed 86 degrees south and hence were approaching the pole, the members of the 'Beyond Endurance' expedition were finally able to glimpse the sheer beauty of the frozen continent for the first time since they set out! "Up until now," writes Pat Falvey, "we have had to endure incessant storms and cope with white-out conditions day after day. Added to that, we have also been battered by katabatic winds and heavy falls of snow which have prevented us from appreciating the beauty of the landscape around us..."

The bad weather has not been the expedition's only setback. On 20th December, as Pat Falvey was in the process of filming his companions' progress, he suddenly experienced a severe pain at the base of his back, which sent him tumbling to the ground. The incident could have been serious, because the others had made their way past him as Falvey shot the sequence and were not aware that he was in trouble, continuing serenely on their way. The whiteout conditions at the time did not help matters either... Which is how the expedition leader came to be alone on the icecap, suffering from dreadful pain...

Fortunately, one of the members of the expedition turned around shortly afterwards and, unable to see Pat following behind them, doubled back and found him struggling to make his way along after the others...

Since this incident, Falvey's companions have taken care of his sledge to enable him to walk more freely. Given the limited number of supplies they have with them, though, there is no way for them to stop for a few days so that their leader's back could heal. This is why he is doing everything he can to continue with his companions, albeit without hauling a load. But how long will he keep on going like this?

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