Our very own Ice Warrior Lisa Pook tells us about her Northerly expedition
Defined as the furthest point from land on the Arctic Ocean and therefore its centre, the Northern Pole of Inaccessibility remains the last truly significant place in the Polar Regions, yet to be reached by mankind and is over two hundred miles further than the Geographic North Pole.
Accomplished explorer, Jim McNeill, has chosen me to take part in one of the most ambitious polar expeditions of our time; to be the first expedition in history to reach the Northern Pole of Inaccessibility. The whole journey will be near to 800 miles from the northern shores of Canada and will take in the North Magnetic Pole on route.
Having been selected for the Ice Warrior Quest for the Inaccessible Pole in February this year, I have been undergoing a comprehensive and intensive training programme to take on at least one of four 20 day legs, pushing the route across the Arctic Ocean by approximately 200 miles.
For the past 9 months I’ve engrossed myself in learning how to ski, expedition planning and fitness, navigation and camp craft, technical rope work, expedition medical training – Level 4 Remote Emergency Care and expedition leadership and teamwork. Much of this has been in the Svalbard. A great training venue if ever there was one!
I have two jobs; my day job, and my polar job. This expedition is consuming me; it’s all I think about!
I’ve just started my gruelling 5 day fitness programme with Steph of Pro Impact Fitnesswhich includes dragging tyres, strength work, kettle bells, running, Nordic walking, sit up, press ups – if it hurts, I will be doing it. You are likely to see me in Stave Hill running about, dragging tyres, on the verge of tears. If you see me, say hi J
I am in this for the challenge but most importantly the science. This transect has never been travelled before and as such we will be gathering crucial datasets for the scientific community including new and vital data about how the sea ice breaks up, making the whole endeavour a massive citizen science project. Our partners include the NASA funded National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC) scientists, The Met Office, The Scott Polar Institute, The Norwegian Polar Institute and the Russian Arctic and Antarctic Research Institute. This vital data will deliver the reality of climate change and make the whole expedition worthwhile and purposeful.
As I think of how far I have come over the past 9 months I am so pleased, and perhaps understandably, a little daunted about the next 4 months. I still need to secure my funding for logistics and the last pieces of kit and equipment and I have 4 months of fitness work ahead. I’ve learnt the skills to be competent on the ice, now I need to stay strong, ready to play my part in this expedition.
If you would like to know more check out my blog, visit my sponsorship page, or ping me an email.
Sponsorship page: http://www.gofundme.com/polarpook