Sunday, 13 July 2014

Schei Camp Established

Our new camp is now successfully up and running on the Schei peninsula (coordinates: N 80 07.699' W 88 10.914'). The camp comprises one mess tent and 5 personal tents. The personal tents are quite spacious and comfortable considering we are sleeping an inch from Arctic tundra on the fringes of civilization. Around the camp we have a tripwire bear fence that Tom has inadvertently tested on a quest for water. 

Near camp we found some small lakes where we saw goose droppings and footprints suggesting geese eat here. The lakes are fringed with a small green plant that looks similar to the salt marsh plants the geese eat in Ireland. There are also some areas of bog that really stand out as they are shockingly green. However, the essence of the Schei is the combination of musk ox skeletons and wolf prints that litter the ground.

Today we inflated one of our zodiac boats and myself and Tom tested it on a nearby lake. Unfortunately, one of the rollocks was broken making rowing difficult, which may have made us look less competent rowers than we truly are. In the end we adopted an Indian- canoe rowing style that kind of worked until the wind was against us. We rowed frantically against the wind but moved very little and eventually gave up in disgust and went back to shore. Nevertheless, a valuable lesson in the importance of well maintained. 


PS from Stu

I am pretty sure the green plant Ian mentions is the same as Alyn Walsh and I found in 2007 an it looks like some sort of Puccinellia species...

Also I have added some google earth maps to show where everything is:

Below is the main study area and the nesting islands around Axel Heiberg's Schei Peninsula.

This one is North Axel Heiberg with the northerly colony (Axel F)  and Eureka (on Ellesmere Island)

The las shows all of the Queen Elizabeth Islands and Resolute Base

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