Saturday 29 March 2014

Fire in the Hole!

We've been moving loads of kit around between the containers to make room to organise things. All the summer boating stuff had to be moved to the end container which was 6 feet under rock hard snow, so the only way to dig down was for me to use the chain saw to cut blocks and move them out by hand.

Cutting blocks while Claire moves them away

We now have all the Doos out of the containers, but they are in a bit of a sorry state from last season. All have flat batteries which need to be replaced, many of the track wheels have broken bearings and some are missing. Some shock absorbers are broken and to cap it all, there was a can of contaminated fuel of which I put about a pint into a doo before I noticed. We need to flush out the tank and order some more wheels and bearings before we move anywhere.

Clair and Paul fitting a new shock absorber. It was just after this that we discovered several broken wheel bearings

The incinerator toilet is now working and the Hilton hasn't burnt down yet. It sucks it down and burns everything just a few inches below the seat - scary. I think I preferred the plastic bag in a bucket.

Fire in the Hole!

Thursday 27 March 2014


Out at Constable Point now. Two days digging out the Weather Haven and containers. There was a lot of snow over the doorway and we built a tunnel down to it with a roof made out of pallets. This is an improvement as it will protect the door from spindrift. The door opens outwards and if it blows and you are inside you can’t get out. Hopefully the protecting tunnel will stop this.

The Hilton

Our camp just before starting to dig

The doorway to the container took a bit of digging

Digging the tunnel to the Weather Haven

 Still got mountains of kit to sort out and we have to see if the skiddoos still work.
Pulling out the skidoos

Here's a good one. We are currently living in the ‘Hilton” a building which they are renovating - again. Nothing works, but they have just installed some incinerator toilets. Last night, the first time it was used it nearly caught fire so they had to quickly shut it down again before we were all burnt in our beds. You can't escape because you just go out into a snow storm! Who says fires don't start in toilets??

The only working toilet in the place has just run out of plastic an hour ago, so we will have an interesting evening tonight.

Incinerator toilet - incinerated itself!

Tuesday 25 March 2014

Sea Ice conditions 2014

Waiting for our Twin Otter flight out to Constable Point (CNP) from Iceland tomorrow. Several 1000kgs of freight will come out in the next few days and our first task will be to dig out all our gear shipping containers and service the Skidoos. We have rented a Skidoo engine diagnostic computer to link to the machines to help with the engine service, so we will see if we can get that to work.

The satellite picture below, shows the February sea ice conditions. It shows large areas of open water where normally there would be sea ice. Open water is obvious on the route down from CNP to the village 50kms away, so travel there will be interesting! There is also a large area of open water below Sydcap, but our route there should avoid this. Lots of route finding to do over the next few weeks.

Satellite Sea Ice conditions in Scorsbysund Feb. 2014