#33: Svalbard Polar Primer kicks off

2022-03-17 06:39:00am
Our new all-male team arrived a couple of days ago and after a day of prep (and a welcome dinner at Kroa) we took the bus 10km out to Camp Barentz, as far as you can drive in a tyred vehicle out of town. But the weather has been nasty the last few days with temperatures above zero, and rain. Today was no different and we unloaded the bus in a drenching drizzle. What misery. Luckily we found an open room at the camp so we turned our sleds upside down and took shelter for an hour until a caretaker arrived and booted us out. Deciding to head for Bolter valley, we skied past a coal mine, a few cabins and a dog yard before realising the futility of our plan. Poor Hugo got stuck in a deep snowy puddle and filled his boots with icy water. Twenty minutes later, up on high ground, we watched as a large torrent of water came streaming down the valley, banks burst somewhere upstream. We’d have easily been swamped and washed downsteam had we been caught in it. We turned east and sidled back to Adventdalen where we found some flat ground next to a cabin with snow suitable for tent anchors. I have one of Hugo’s inner boots, he has the other, each hanging over a stove, they’ll be dry and warm in a couple of hours. A day out of the ordinary.
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