L O U ' S D I A R Y
Day 45 in Antarctica. Lou wakes from a deep sleep and gets going a little behind schedule. After an hour he encounters a group of tents and vehicles and finds himself in a campsite in the company of Arctic trucks and Taiwanese skiers. In spite of a few distractions he crosses 89 degrees South for the second time and covers a good 9 miles into 88...
Dec 17 2018 -
Good evening everyone...
Reporting in now from day 45 of the expedition. A bit of an odd day today, and quite a bit of disruption to my normal routines. It started off, I was in such a deep sleep when the alarm went off, I was almost in a state of shock! I laid there for a few minutes, looking at the roof of the tent thinking ‘where am I, what’s going on?’ My morning routine did run as slick as usual. I’d been outside to get the worst job of the day done – a number two – come back in, got on with the jobs. I was fully dressed and realised I had to go again, so had to strip off again. I had to go back outside. It put me out of kilter a bit. Eventually I got going, probably about 10-15 minutes late. And set off.
I’d only been going about an hour, and I spotted on my line of march, on my bearing, some tents and vehicles. After a couple of hours, I arrived at a campsite – a whole load of tents there, and three vehicles there from Arctic trucks, from Iceland, who were supporting a Taiwanese expedition. As I got closer, they all came spilling out the tents. We had a chat – there were six Taiwanese skiers; I think four guys, two girls, and they’re doing the last 3 degrees. They’ve got these three trucks with support crew in support, and they’d driven out to 87 Degrees and were making their way towards the Pole, from here, and they’re jumping out the trucks… and just ski, they haven’t got any kit or anything like that, just on skis, and they’re slowing making their way to the Pole. With big campsites and a cook and everything else – doing it the luxury way!
They got driven out then, past me, to ski to 20km of the day. Again, we met later in the day, more filming, more photographs, chatting. I lost a lot of time, chatting away with them. One of the guys pulled out his phone and said he was friends with me on Facebook and showed me a picture of me on his phone. I didn’t even realise. It was all quite surreal. One of them was on a tricycle, a sit-down tricycle, with big fat tyres on, and it looks like he was pedalling that to the Pole as well.
I met them about three or four times throughout the day and every time I passed them we stopped to chat as well, it disrupted my whole day, and eventually – late afternoon - I was just keen to get away from them and get back to my routine, to make progress and to get back to my solitude. It was all a bit odd but I’m well clear of them now and they’re going the opposite was so I shouldn’t see them again.
I successfully crossed 89 degrees South, for the second time on the expedition. I did that while I was on the way to the Pole, obviously the opposite way round, so that was good, so I’m into 88, and I managed to crunch a good 9 miles into 88. A bit of progress into 60 nautical miles today. It was great. Hopefully I won’t see anybody tomorrow and I can crack on and make good progress. I also think I’ve identified one of the causes of my mouth pain, what’s causing me the issues. You’ll be surprised to find out what it is. I’ll reveal that tomorrow.
That’s all for tonight.