It’s terrific weather here, startlingly warm -- in the 50- to 60-degree range. More importantly, it’s clear and sunny. Hard to sleep because the sun is shining all night long, even though we have blinders to put on. I’m a little tired. The sun hasn’t gone down since I’ve been here, and it won’t go down the whole time I’m here.
I did some calculations with the GPS, and we’re 700 miles above the Arctic Circle and 900 miles from the North Pole, so we’re about halfway between the circle and the pole. We’re so far north that the sun doesn’t go down for months.
The landscape is rocky, and when I get up high I get great views of the sea. There is pack ice in some places and open water in others. That is appropriate for July. People back home ask about global warming, but we cannot be the judge of that. When we come to the Arctic from year to year, we do not go to the same place. We go to different locations, so we can’t compare the amount of ice and water from year to year.
Our established base is in the middle of a lot of rock exposures. We are walking 8 to 10 miles a day. It’s a lot of work. Lots of distance to cover. But so far so good.