Friday, March 14, 2008

Iqaluit to Kimmirut and Back

So tomorrow the team and I are leaving for a 7 day dogsled race to Kimmirut and back. The round trip will be 320 Kilometers, most of those miles will be run by at least one team member. Tomorrow will be our hardest day, and I'm glad that we are getting it out of the way right off the bat. We will sled for about three hours to cross the bay, then we'll hit rough sea ice that has pressed into shore all winter, creating massive folds in ice many meters thick. Just behind the sea ice, our trail heads for the sky, and a very poorly covered slope strewn with boulders marks the beginning of 700 meters of climbing. The dogs are not going to be very happy about this, and I probably won't be either. To do a race of this distance is intimidating, but to do it in the frigid temperatures that we will be in is downright terrifying. It's so cold out here, that cargo holds and transport trucks called "refrigerators" are actually heated to keep food from freezing to much.

There are six teams in the race, one of them has already said that he will only be along for half of the race, he already had to do the first part of the course just to get to town, and the tough 70 year old Inuit man is running with puppies, as all of his dogs died from disease last year. It's guys like this that make me reevaluate myself. What I call adventure, and what I prepare for many months to do, this guy has done his whole life. I listened very carefully to his words of advice through an interpreter last night as he advised the teams on the condition of the trail, the speed of the snow, and the dangers that we will be encountering. I am certain that his words will echo in my mind as all that he warned us of comes to pass.

1 comment:

Shiloh said...

Ben this is fantastic let our class explore with you! I will share with them all your blogs please post photos this is so exciting-PROUD OF YOU!
So Much Love~Shiloh