North Pole Teams Are Away! is reporting that the North Pole expedition season is officially open with teams hitting the ice over the past few days. With Spring in the Northern Hemisphere a few short weeks away now, the window to the North is open.

Alain and Dixie got off to a bit of a rough start, having to already get an airlift over an open section of ice near Cape Arktichevsky. You’ll recall that they are the two who are attempting to travel from Siberia to the tip of Greenland by ski.

Meanwhile, Ann Bancroft and Liv Arnesen has a close call shortly after hitting the ice. They are on an unsupported expedition to the North Pole but ran into problems yesterday when a plane carrying Richard Webers’ travel group touched down close by, then slid off course directly toward Ann and Liv. They scrambled out of the way, but not before one of the plane’s skiis slid across Ann’s sled, puncturing it, and ripping a binding off of one of her snow shoes. The rest of the day was spent on repairs. Talk about bad luck! That’s a bit like being in the middle of the sahara desert and getting run over by a the only passing truck for miles.

Meanwhile, Will Steger’s Global Warming 101 team has been on Baffin Island for 13 days now, and are already witnessing the effects of the subject in which they came to study. Open waters on inlets and bays that would normally be frozent this time of year, are making their journey longer and slower than expected.

Kraig Becker

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