More tales from Bruce; thanks mate we’re really enjoying hearing about it.
We woke this morning and Steve saw a set of horns sticking out of the snow,When we looked a little later there were 3 reindeer hoofing holes down thro the soil to feed,A male and 2 females just outside our hostel,We kitted up to go out in the -26c to take pics.
Steve decided to hike up to a disused coalmine he encountered sheet ice wearing his snow boots and contemplated his situation on a 30degree slope 100metres up and tenuously retreated in the absence of crampons and ice axe.
A very stiff breeze feels like -40 and is blowing fine snow into drifts.
Steves snore valve is not operating thank goodness. Our dog sled trip is booked for Thursday when it’s forecast to be -31c.
The weather had calmed down after yesterday’s blast. We are told it was minus -40 in the teeth of the wind and we went up onto a glacier this evening on snowmobiles with guys that claimed the temperature had gone down even lower at higher levels.
We went into a cave caused by summer melt underneath the Longyearbyen glacier.
The ice crystals formed by condensation are amazing in there variety. The hike up onto the glacier would be a welcome activity but we would have to hire someone with a rifle as Polar bears have killed people here. The dog sled trip will be at 9am tomorrow morning and we have discovered how important it is to have the right equipment: One of our cave guides had no skin on the tip of his nose from frost nip. The wind chill on sled and skidoo rides will get you unless you completely cover up.