Explorer Mikael Strandberg

Expedition Siberia 2004-5: Toughest part with being outdoors in -50 degrees C

Toughest part with being outdoors in -50 degrees C? Getting out of your sleeping bag every morning. Not that it has been a comfortable night. Getting into the sleeping bag after a long cold and hard day is not a joy. It is tight, wet, still ice left on the front and it takes a long time to feel any warmth. We had to bring out tech equipment inside overnight and the petrol bottle. And put wet items, normally socks and facemask, on our stomach to dry. Knees, elbows and butt never seems warm and comfy. Shivering and pain stays almost all night. Getting up when the alarm goes off is not easy. Worst is if you have the job of trying to start up the stove and start melting water for breakfast and lunch in a Thermos. The joy, dosing off another half an hour! Getting out of the sleeping bag, means finger pain and getting the big down jacket on. Use the already cold fingers to get the little things going on the stove, and collect snow. Once breakfast is done, after two hours, time to get out of the tent. It is cumbersome, cold and you have to get things done. Pack, get the harness on, try to get the heavy pulk moving. And then spending at least half an hour walking and not using the skipoles. Because you need to warm the thumb and fingers. There is lots of joy when you reach that level when you are a bit warm, before you start sweating due to the weight. Read more at https://www.mikaelstrandberg.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/Explorers_journal_winter_05_06.pdf

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