Tuesday, 29 July 2008

So this is what they meant...7128 15534

And just around the corner - lucky break - a clear patch and ice all around the horizon. Not a lot, but big, thick floes - the charts would call it open water - easy to navigate until - enter the Examiner, stage left - really thick fog, vis less than 50 metres and big lumps of ice all around. Trickling along under motor, Kimbra on the bow, McQ steering. According to the ice chart, we should gradually get past this stuff but it certainly concentrates the mind a bit. We are pointing directly at Tuk - or might be! there's a big discrepancy between the boat GPS and the computer which gets its NMEA feed from the GPS. In theory, they should agree - seems they both have the same variation, WGS 84 datum so a mystery.

Much later, freckle well exercised - this fog and ice stuff is seriously scary. We were in about 2 tenths ice - easy - then without warning, about 5 tenths of big bergy floes with very narrow leads between them in vis of about 50 metres. No wind, luckily, else things might have been different, but we wormed our way out into some clearer water - them more big stuff and so it goes. And it's almost worse when the fog clears for a brief moment and all you can see is apparently unbroken ice. One huge floe was breaking up as we passed - booming crashes as massive ledges of ice fell off into the water. A new noise for me - hope I don't ever get to hear it without being abloe to see where it comes from. From the ice chart, we may have 100 miles of this. Quite tense but we'll work our way through - one difficulty is that you don't know where it is coming from so there's no obvious way out.

Now at 7123 15432 after much snaky meandering at idle revs. Hope we're through it before the westerly builds in a couple of days.

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