Ice slowly breathing


16 November 2006

72nd day of drift.
 Position: 82?37’N, 139?58’E
 Course and Speed: SW, 0.1 knots
 Wind: N, 10 knots
 Sea Ice: Slight movement
 Visibility: Moderate, cloudy sky
 Phase of moon: Last quarter
 Air Temperature: -15°C
 Water Temperature: -1.5°C

 Comparing the faint sound of the ever-so-slowly moving sea ice to that of a train approaching from a distance through a long tunnel is not a relationship that I would have made before starting our expedition. However, this is the first though that
came to mind yesterday morning at around 5am when I went outside to check on the ice situation. Admittedly, it was before my wake-up cup of coffee, forcing me to pause and question the absurdity of a train heading our way. I listened closely for a few seconds, watching the horizon intently (or the place where I though the horizon would be in the black void) and as the frigid air slowly
awoke my senses I gradually drew the conclusion that the 5am inbound from Siberia was in fact a freight train of ice, and we were on it! This realization simultaneously confirming that I would thankfully never make it as a trainspotter. Like a living organism, the ice was slowly breathing, controlled inhalations and exhalations that would be the envy of any aspiring yogi.