ExWeb has posted a brief update on events in Antarctica today, that compares the progress of Todd Carmichael to Hannah McKeand. A few years back Hannah set a new solo, unsupported speed record to the Pole, and now Todd is hoping to break that record, which stands at 39 days, 9 hours, and 33 minutes.
Last week I made a couple of comments saying that Todd probably didn’t have much of a chance at that record since he’s had the bindings on his skis break, and is unable to repair one of them. He’s been making his way on foot for the past week or so because of this, and only using his skis when he absolutely has to to navigate crevasse fields and the like. But, according to ExWeb, Todd is actually just about 10 nautical miles off the pace that Hannah set back in 2006.
Well! I stand corrected! Todd is currently 20 days into his journey, and has more than enough time left, weather permitting, to make up that difference. Pretty impressive really, considering he’s not using his skis much. From here on out, the sled will be gin to get lighter as supplies being to dwindle, and speed may pick-up some. It would be interesting to compare Hannah’s time splits with Todd’s from here on out, to see if the gap narrows or widens.
Today’s dispatch from Todd’s team indicates that winds were awful once again today, and are expected to remain so for the next four days. That means there are long, exhausting days ahead if he hopes to maintain the pace. Hopefully he’ll get a break after that. Todd has passed the 84th degree today, and has now gone further than he did last year when he had to abandon his bid for the Pole.
Good luck Todd. Keep up the great work.