North Pole 2010: More Teams Prepping To Go

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Yesterday I posted about several of the expeditions that are either already in Canada, or were on their way. Unfortunately, a blizzard had a number of them stranded in a variety of locations, preventing them from reaching Resolute Bay, a popular starting point for arctic explorers. Flights are not expected to resume today, although I’ve heard that they will begin tomorrow, with several trips planned to make up for the back-log of people and gear waiting to hit the tiny Canadian town.

The teams I spotlighted yesterday aren’t the only ones making the trip up north however, as there will be several others hoping to make the journey too. Take for example, Tessum Weber, who is aiming to get underway next week. At the age of 20, he hopes to become the youngest person to reach the Geographic North Pole, and he couldn’t have picked a better guide to get him there. Tessum will be traveling with polar legend Richard Weber.

British explorers Dan Darley and Amelia Russell have been in Resolute Bay for more than a week, and have been ready to get started, while they patiently waited for a weather window. According to an update posted on their website yesterday, the window opened for them today. Due to the storms preventing anyone from getting into town, there was an open slot on an outgoing plane today. It seems that they quickly putting the finishing touches on their prep work, and should have hit the ice today. Hopefully we’ll get an update from the soon. But for now, you can read more about the pair in this interview over at ExWeb.

Australian husband and wife team Linda Beilharz and Rob Rigato have posted a new dispatch today, and like everyone else, they’re waiting out the weather with flights into Resolute still being cancelled. They also note that satellite images have revealed large leads opening up along the northern coastline of Canada, which may be good or bad depending on the weather. If they freeze over, they’ll make for smooth and easy traveling, but if they don’t freeze, it’ll make for long treks around them. For Linda and Rob however, all they can do at this point is wait, as their gear is packed, and they are ready to go. Just waiting for their turn to be delivered to Ward Hunt Island, their starting point.

The Irish Team of Pat Falvey, Clare O’Leary, and John Dowd finished up their training in Yellowknife, Canada awhile back, and should also be preparing for their departure soon. To date, there has been few updates to the team website, although, as I mentioned yesterday, John has been updating his own blog regularly. Hopefully once they get underway, we’ll hear more about their efforts as well.

Finally, Italian Michele Pontrandolfo is hoping to make a solo expedition to the Pole as well. While my Italian is spotty (At best!), I can tell from his blog that he arrived in Canada on Monday, and I’m guessing he’s waiting, like everyone else, for the weather to clear.

Looks like it’s quite the International contingent heading to 90º North this year. When they all get there, perhaps they can hold a U.N. meeting. Or at the very least, share a stick of butter.

Kraig Becker

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