Well folks, the update we’ve all been waiting for has recently been posted by the BSES on their blog. I will shortly relate what information they have posted online and then you can also choose to read it from their blog.
Because I grew inpatient I called the London emergency phone number of the BSES, which was provided by Celina before leaving to Svalbard, Norway. This has been most unhelpful. They have guided me to their blog. Reading through the online articles (they posted quite a lot yesterday…) I realized there was more than one expedition in the Arctic, lead by the BSES. In fact one expedition has been there for the past 6 weeks. They were talking about snow blindness like it was a common walk in the park. Surely that can put us to rest…
Enough with the side chatter, here’s the content you’ve been waiting for. Celina’s group is called the Environmental Course or Enviro. I shall relate the events in chronological order, starting with the 29th of May.
As you all know, on the 29th of May Celina has landed in Longyearbyen, Norway. The next day their boat ride to Base Camp 3 has been delayed by high winds. I did not know of any boat ride, until I read the article.
It seems that Cat Boggs was the science leader of their first expedition, which lasted 5 days. They have trekked to Glacier Camp, at the bottom of Wimenfjellet horseshoe (which I assume to be a rock formation). The goal of the expedition was to study glaciology. All their projects have been successful. Enviro has concluded that the glacier has melted and the snout receded roughly 100m up the hillside. All these projects have been conducted in a rough climate, different than the one in base camp, with freezing temperatures and lots of snow (2.5m at times). The group has also checked on 2 unnamed glaciers, previously found, which still exist today. They had to climb up and over Wimenfjellet horseshoe to get to them. In unwelcoming weather conditions, that must have been a hard task. In her last day at Glacier Camp Celina has helped measure the surface height of the Wimanbreen by subtracting snow depth from altitude at numerous points across the glacier.
The trip, as Cat relates, has been thoroughly enjoyed by the Enviro students. They all had a very productive time at Glacier Camp.
The group has already returned (I assume sometime within the past 2 days) to base camp. The second phase of their studies started, the biology and ecology phase. I am sure Celina will love this last phase, especially the ecology part, where she will be able to provide great feedback due to knowledge gained from research and courses.
I hope you enjoy the reading as much as I have!
PS: Celina will be back home in 1 week.