Distance to go:
Ben and Tarka will cover 1800 miles starting from Scott's Terra Nova Hut at the edge of Antarctica to the South Pole and back to the coast again. That's equivalent to 69 back-to-back marathons hauling up to 200kg each (the weight of roughly two adult men) of kit and supplies necessary to survive.
Distances here are shown in statute miles.
Thought of Home
Outside the tent, another whiteout. Another long day looms. Slow hours hauling through soft snow with zero visibility, looking forward only to the time when we can stop, and set up the tent in a spot identical to our previous camp.
Inside the tent, another world. Messages from home.
Short skirts and summer weddings.
Ben phones Expedition HQ (Andy, in his shorts, drinking tea and watching the cricket) daily to give our coordinates. In return we hear of a heatwave in England, and that the West Indies are 147 for 6 in the cricket.
We are entering that strange transition phase that comes near the end of an expedition. Close enough for the countdown to cold beers and warm beds to have begun. But still far enough from the end for it to be unhelpful and unwise to spend all day looking forward only to going home.
It is a wonderful world out here, even as I contemplate our third day of whiteout. I am going to savour and enjoy these final days in this colossal wilderness. And after that I am going to savour and enjoy a very big steak.