14 Dec Half Way – Day 23 of SPEC
We have reached Thiel Mountains late this evening. We are half way to the South Pole. It is a great feeling, to know that we have reached this milestone. We travelled 8.8 nm today with some additional stops to test and record some of the information on the technical equipment we are proving along the way. The weather Gods have been on our side these last 2 days and we are eternally grateful. Another day with little wind and blue skies. This is the Antarctic I love. We are still in an area with crevasses so moving slower than normal, just in case.
The Shell bio fuel has been very successful. There were concerns that it might block the fuel lines to the stove, or parts of the cooking stove itself. Neither has been true. It burns clean, not as warm as fossil fuels but the trade is more than worth it. We are using the same amount that we had calculated if we were using white gas. Therefore the burn rate is about the same. I think of a day in the not too distant future when we can use water products for our energy. Is it really so far away?
The snow melters have really changed polar travel. On previous journeys it would take a while to get into the tent, get all the sleds unpacked, then start melting snow for dinner and drinks. Being able to melt the snow in the melters powered by the solar panels as we travel, is an enormous step forward. I am so excited by this product. We are able to eat sooner and save much fuel by only having to heat the water and not melt the snow first.
Change is coming and hopefully we are doing our small part to expedite that change. Now to dinner….