Tara, logbook of the Arctic Drift (in French)
A flamboyant account by Grant Redvers, head of the expedition, on the greatest Arctic campaign of the 4th International Polar Year.
Over a century after the explorer Nansen, the schooner Tara, owned by Etienne Bourgois, voluntarily becomes frozen in the pack ice on September 3, 2006. What was the goal of this strange icy spell lasting 507 days? With the help of high-tech instruments, data was collected on the state of the ice, the atmosphere, and Arctic Ocean. As a sentry for the evolving climate, the Arctic revealed essential information to the 10 ‘Taranautes’, who besides their scientific mission, lived together for almost 2 years and experienced some exceptional moments.
Confronting the vast Arctic is an intense experience where each daily chore appears like a “mission impossible”: stocking up on ice for domestic needs (water) at minus 400 C, cramped living conditions on board, the enormous job of maintenance of frozen equipment, taking instrument readings regardless of the weather, absence of family and women; but the voyage is equally punctuated with congenial evenings accompanied by songs, the ritual bania (Russian sauna), meals among friends, and tensions too.
From the complex preparations for the expedition to the isolation on the ice pack, Grant Redvers captivates us with his story of this unique human and scientific adventure. Conclusions drawn from the expedition are proving to be definitive in the study of our planet’s ‘climate machine’.
“The major event of the International PolarYear”
After a master’s degree in Environmental Sciences and 3 periods in Antarctica at the New Zealand Scott base, Grant Redvers, age 33, is named scientific director of the Tara-Arctic mission. He is the only member of the Tara expedition to have spent the total 507 days onboard.In bookstores on June 3, 2009
in the series “Les pôles aujourd’hui”, published by Paulsen
280 pages, 16-page photo supplement
40 drawings by the author
15.5 x 21cm
price: 22 euros
translated from the English (New Zealand) by Christian de Marliave