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.
Wax On, Wax Off (Day 26)
Day 26: S80° 26' 53.04", E168° 44' 47.34"
Duration: 8 Hr
Daily distance: 13.8 Mi
Distance to go: 1588.3 Mi
Temperature: -17 °C
Wind chill: -24 °C
Altitude: 172 Ft
A short update this evening as I'm busy patching and sewing up a hole I managed to make in my down jacket. Our mileage is creeping up and we made 13.7 miles today, which is roughly our third half-marathon three days in a row.
Conditions were kind to us today, the surface was relatively good, the sun stayed out all day, it wasn't too cold (or too hot) and the docile wind stayed either behind us or on our right. I was marvelling this afternoon at the human body's capacity for endurance and recovery, and at how little use most of us get from the incredible organisms we all inhabit; how few locomotive miles we clock up with our enormously capable metabolisms and musculature.
Having said that, Tarka pointed out over dinner this evening (freeze-dried Kung Po chicken, and extraordinarily good it was too) that I now have a substantial number of grey beard hairs, so perhaps this trip is taking more of a toll than I'd thought!
You'll be glad to hear that Tarka is drafting his first special guest star blog post and it'll be up in the next few days. The photo is of the man himself applying fluoride wax to the base of our 'fat' skis. We have two pairs each. Fat - which have full-length, full-width skins for traction with heavy sleds; and skinny - with shorter, narrower skins for lighter sleds and faster travel. We'll switch to the skinnies in the next week or so, and once we're happy with them, we'll cut down our fat skins to match.