Day 26 - Mind control


Today was a good day. The terrain left a lot to be desired, but the sledge followed without too much braking for almost the whole day. On the last leg of the evening, the terrain was the smoothest we have seen so far. Mikko is illustrated on this terrain in the picture of the day. This again gives good (but hopefully not false) hope for the coming days.

Now that we have moved from the darkness to the light here, it is good to mention a word about the emotional challenges of such an excursion. There isn't a bonehead that doesn't swim in murky waters from time to time. Fifty days is a really long time to be alone in the terrain, and especially in the early days, the time left seems hopelessly long. When you add a little adversity to that (which always happens), the brain is acceptable for a bit of gloom. Usually, these go away in an hour or two. The good thing about having two of us on a trip is that usually, one is always more cheerful. What's even more special here in Antarctica is the constant light: it helps to keep the mind healthy.

A very effective way to control your mind is to set goals for yourself: it is significantly easier to expect something to happen in five days than in thirty days. For example, the break-down goals of our trip from now on:

  • Now waiting for the Thiels mountain range. It is something that breaks the horizon and is, at the same time, the halfway point of skiing.
  • Soon, there’s the fourth week in the terrain, a good milestone in itself.
  • After Thiels, the next scheduled rest day is at hand.
  • After that, the degrees are counted: at that point, there are less than four left. Each of them is a clear step towards the finish line.
  • The last degree is, of course, special.
  • And like that, then we have reached our destination.
Location-84.06152, -80.511055
Altitude1304 m
Temperature-15 °C
Wind4 m/s S
Ski hours9 h
Distance26.5 km (2.9 km/h)
Cumulative466 km
Remaining660 km
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Mikko and the steady ice