Saturday, 16 August 2008

K: Arctic Onions

After a night of headwind sailing in short choppy seas, we're now just entering the southern end of James Ross Strait in near calm conditions. But it's getting cold! The water temperature has gone down from 9 deg C to 3 deg C overnight, and my (oh so accurate) Alaska key-chain thermometer moved down from 16 deg C (where it's been since I bought it in the gift shop in Nome) to 10 deg C.

Hence the Arctic onions - the three of us are all dressed up in layer after layer of clothing to keep the chilly air at bay. Thinking of adding an extra layer, but not sure I'll be able to move around deck if I do!

No sign of ice yet, but it's likely to show up later today or early tomorrow. Probably in the middle of the night just to be difficult (it's starting to get dark again now). The yacht Tyhina has come down from Resolute to the Tasmania Islands without encountering too much ice, which is good news for us. So fingers crossed for the next 24-48 hours for the good conditions to hold so we can get north past the "tricky bit" where McClintock Strait dumps ice from the NW into Larsen & Tyhina can get safely south to James Ross St.

Hilary - thanks for your kind thoughts. No rosebuds to gather, but certainly an atmosphere of remote and solemn tranquility to absorb. At the moment the clouds are reflecting a rose-pinky-grey above the tundra, so that can be today's shade of grey.

Love to all, K.

(PS- Mum & Dad - after telling you on the phone the other night that it drizzled more than rained up here, we had some real proper Tasmanian bushwalking rain the other night. After getting soaked by it for an hour or so I decided to make us of it and catch some fresh water off the boom, which was quite a successful way of making it stop raining!!)

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