Becoming a Team
Day 2 was a day of team formation and skill development. At Summit we specialize in helping corporate teams develop and it is no different on an expedition. If anything, it is life and death critical and it has to happen very fast. Right now we are in the Forming stage. Our first day on the ice will bring out the storming. Day 2-3 will be Norming and then if we have focused and planned well we will hit Performing around day 4 and stay there. I woke at 6am with the sun blazing in the sky. We have about 20 hours of sun right now and by the time our trip is done it will be pretty much 24 hours. It was a cold -24 in Resolute today, but when the sun was out and the wind was still it was quite comfortable.
We spent the morning going over food pack out and everyone gathered what they wanted for breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks for the trip. Breakfast options include oatmeal, granola, and freeze dried options like breakfast skillet, scrambled eggs and ham, and biscuits and sausage gravy. Lunch is a mix of nuts, chocolate, cheese and salami and dinners are freeze dried options such as Chili Mac, Chicken Teriyaki with Rice, Beef Stew and more. We will also have snacks of cheese, crackers, pate, soup and various drinks.
After food pack we started to set up our sleds. We are fortunate that many of the previous expeditions over the last 20 years or so have left their gear behind (not sure why). Ozzie has stored it all in 4 sea containers that are packed with everything imaginable for a polar expedition. We dug out 9 sleds and many were the exact sleds I used when we led the True Patriot Love trip here in 2014. Several sleds still had members names on them from that trip.
I did a demo on how to pack the sled and rig it to your pack. Loaded my sled weighs 85lbs. After lunch we went out for a ski on the ice to test our systems, to review tent set up and to test our firearms and deterrent pistols for Polar Bear protection.
We skied out on the ice about 2km and then stopped at a reasonable flat spot that looked good for a tent. The ski was pretty easy. The snow is quite hard packed and the sleds glide easily. The ice in the bay did not melt this past summer so as more ice accumulated it did get a bit jumbled up and bumpy, but overall the ski conditions were quite good. I hope they are this good where we will be dropped off for our start.
We set up the tent and it is always amazing how warm it is when you get inside the tent. Once the tent was set up we all got in and reviewed our camp procedures. After about 30 minutes we broke down the tent and showed the group how to use the deterrent pistols with bangers and screamers and also our shotgun and rifle. Once on the ice we will also have a dog that is trained to be an early warning system for polar bears and to scare the bear off if one were to wander into our camp area.
The ski back was much colder as the sun disappeared behind the clouds and a wind picked up. Once back at the hotel we reviewed the excursion and answered questions. Dinner was once again great and most of us ate too much. A little more prep work after dinner and we are pretty much ready to go.
Good night from the North.