1k Down!

Finally, a little more wind to work with.

Forecast was for some wind today so I slept restlessly listening for it. At about 1 am I heard the tent start gently flapping , then a soulful moan as the wind built in strength.

My alarm went off at 2:30 am but it was so cold I couldn’t get out of my bag. Finally at 3:30 am I got moving and launched the big kite at 4:45 am. Once again wearing all I have as it was brutally cold, close to minus 40C.

Gaps in the constant fields of sastrugi briefly opened up, with football-field-sized segments of flat ice giving me reprieve. The big kite pulled me along like a truck and my heart soared as I covered ground more easily. It was short lived though! Within an hour, the nasty sastrugi ridges returned, smashing me and the sleds without mercy. How anything survives in that sled is beyond me!

It was a complicated day with 3 kite changes and eventually I realised late in the day I broke the 1000 km barrier! A momentous day as that 1000km has been so hard won. Rough ice, extreme cold, upwind kiting in windchill below -45C, continual broken gear (just today repairs needed on comms unit, solar panels and two burst food bags) and not to forget I was without decent wind for 5 consecutive days! What a mission!

I would say that’ll be the toughest 1000 as I am certainly acclimatising and getting settled now. Gee I’m looking forward to December temperatures!

POI is 620 km to the South East – it finally feels within reach. I pushed hard today and had a couple of stacks. Mental note: Deep breaths, slow down and avoid injury. Press on tomorrow. – Geoff.