April 9, 2005

The team has once again been picked up from the ice, and we are now back in Resolute Bay where we did preparations before the start of this expedition.

Picture taken from the airplane after pick up

We had a medical situation that had been going on for a couple of day. One of the team members had symptoms that the team could not treat on the ice. We did necessary examination and we had a lot of contact with different professional medical specialists who "online" through the Iridium satellite phone assisted us with their expertise.

Some of us are drilled to take care of different emergency situations that can occur, but we are not doctors, and can not check inside the patient's body. We can only give first aid to the patient and help him stay alive until a help arrives. Since we of cause don't have hospital equipment, which in this case was necessary for final examination, we were strongly advised by the experts to do an evacuation of the team member, for closer diagnose, as the symptoms and pain only increased in strength.

The symptoms could get worse, and the patient had to stay calm and warm. Luckily the team has very good medical contacts in all the countries where we come from: Japan, Russia and Norway. So the patient can talk directly to the specialist in his own language. This is a necessity so it is possible to try to find a more specific diagnose, and we can take the right decision. Some cases are "clear cut" situations, and the emergency procedure can be taken at once. Other situations, like this one, are not so clear and not so easy to define, which also makes our decisions more difficult to make. But as I have explained earlier, there are very few things worth getting serious injuries from and/or risking your life for. So "it's better to be safe than sorry!"

Mr. Ohba looking out of the window of Kenn Borek's Twin Otter as we return to Resolute Bay

Kenn Borek Air, reliable as always (!), arrived our position just a couple of hours after the decision was made and we got picked up southeast of Bear Corner 200 kilometers by air from Grise Fiord, our next destination. In Resolute Bay we got an immediate medical attention from the local medical authority, and we were very happy to hear that this case is most likely not so serious as we first expected. We have to stay in Resolute Bay a couple of days so the situation can be evaluated over some time by the specialists, and with their advice, we will continue our journey south.

Here in Resolute Bay we also got a re-supply of new equipment, such as clothing, as some of the gear were not made for the extreme conditions up here and were broken just after a month of use in the cold!

We have gathered a lot of experiences on our way south, so for each stop we make good improvements. Another aspect is that the temperatures are a lot higher now, which makes everyday living much more comfortable, and our equipment functions better.

A lot of ice and snow freezes between the two layers in my jacket and stays there, so I had to split the jacket with a knife to get access and remove it. Now I have finally received a jacket with one layer which will function much better, so I don't have to do this.

I am very grateful to receive all these nice messages on our web page, both to me personally and to the team. This really warms me to the bottom of my heart. And I thank every one of you!

The light and the colors on the horizon pictured after a day's march from our camp close to Hare Point in Eureka Sound. An image like this is really worth working for!

The artic is full of surprises, and we have to "judge day by day", take challenges as they come, and try to solve them by the best of our mind!

Our next leg towards south is a really challenge, so to all our supporters: don't give up yet, because I have no intention of doing so!

Thumbs UP!

Håvard Svidal-Haugan      

February 2005
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March 2005
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April 2005
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May 2005
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June 2005
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