Distance travelled: 11 miles
Hours on skis: 6 hrs
Cumulative distance: 664 miles
Still to go: 37 miles
Temp: -25C (windchill -35C)
Of note: Lewis rang into his school, QEH in Bristol, to talk to school friends and answer their questions today. The whole thing was filmed by BBC Points West and the National News. It was quite hard to hear Lewis on his crackly satellite phone but, as discussed in the previous blog, it is now truly mind over matter. Lewis said “my body has had enough, I am forcing it to go on”. Their report to basecamp reads simply “Lewis is tired. Very cold.” Despite this he sounded cheery enough and loved talking to his mates from school. [because of the delay in getting base camp reports, the data above always relates to the previous day, so they did 11 miles yesterday. We will know what they managed today tomorrow and so on].
Picture shows forecast for Saturday, the day they hope to arrive at the Pole. You can see that not only does the temperature start to fall on Saturday but the wind also picks up to a strong breeze. The result is that the southerly most point on earth will greet Lewis and Carl, after nearly seven weeks on the ice, with sunshine, but – it is also forecast to be -46C! at 18.00 on Saturday (that’s -30 plus windchill). This is alarmingly cold even for Antarctica. And remember it’s summer down there. Whether it will delay their arrival will remain to be seen. Carl will always put his and Lewis’s safety first and if they need to hole up in the tent to prevent frost bite then that is what they will have to do, however close the pole is.
All being well, predicted arrival date remains Saturday. Given this forecast the sooner they can get there the better. Lewis is exhausted but somehow he needs to push on to avoid this dangerous weather.