Ordinary Men Doing Extraordinary Things - North Pole Expedition 2012
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We're on Top of The World
Wednesday, 11th April, 2012 - 5.25am
We're on the move again
Our Route
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We're on Top of The World

 
 Wednesday, 11th April, 2012 – 11.00am UK Time
 
 
Hey – you lot down there? 
 
We’re on Top of the World!!!!!
 
We did it! We made it!
 
We’re in the middle of doing our Victory Dance trying not to spill the whiskey!!
 
Best Wishes to everyone – thanks so much for your support – we’ve got some fab photo’s to share with you when we return.
 
 
From the Top of The World – 6 Ordinary Men
Brian, Alex, Andrew, Paul, Nigel and John
 

Wednesday, 11th April, 2012 - 5.25am

Wednesday, 11 April, 2012 – 5.25am

Made great progress yesterday through really though terrain.  Ice is hard and sharp!  Had a bit of open water to negotiate but once we got through this we were able to crack on.  Managed to do 10.5miles yesterday.  Beautiful sunny day.  Though it sounds lovely to have these weather conditions, this is without doubt, the toughest challenge we have ever put ourselves through.  Everyone is exhausted by the end of each day and after all the tents are up, all we can do is try to keep warm and we welcome sleep with open arms. 

We’re just packing up the tents now to head off again.  We have roughly 5miles to do today to get to The Top of The World – our target is to reach the North Pole by lunchtime today, 11 April, 2012.

Thank you to everyone for your support - knowing that you are willing us on makes this just that little bit easier.

Hopefully, we’ll be able to update you at lunchtime today.

Al l the best

Six Ordinary Men (but very tired)
Brian, Alex, Andrew, Paul, Nigel and John

We're on the move again

We’re on the move again………
 
 
Hi Everyone.  
 
So we stayed in the tents all day on day 4.  Visibility and weather just too bad.  Waking up the next morning – we were covered in ice and snow and had to chisel ourselves out of the tents. 
 
Whilst it was really tough just staying put and waiting – it absolutely was the best thing to do as the ground ice had then firmed up and was perfect for trekking. 
 
The start of the day was quite tough – getting over the newly formed ice etc.  However, we did 10 miles yesterday and we’re feeling good! 
 
Hopefully, we  crack another 10 miles today and then we should be just 5 miles from our goal!  Talk to you soon
 
Six Ordinary Men
Brian, Alex, Andrew, Paul, Nigel and John
 
 
 

Our Route

Our Route

Boys are receiving your messages

Keep the blog messages going everyone - the guys are receiving all of them.
 
We’re fundraising for SPARKS & we’d love your support! Text SMNP66 £10 to 70070 to sponsor us today. Thanks.
 
 
 
 

Spread the Word.......................

 
 
We’re fundraising for SPARKS & we’d love your support! Text SMNP66 £10 to 70070 to sponsor us today. Thanks.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
We’re on the ice now – this is the hardest thing we have ever done in our lives. Follow our blog – http://www.6ordinarymen.co.uk/blog.html
 
 
We’ve had 35,000 hits on our website – if each person donated just £1 by text that would be an extra £35,000!  If they donated £10 – it would be an amazing £350,000! 
 
 
We have 5 move days to achieve our aim – trekking to The Top of The World for this worthy charity – Sparks.  Please give anything that you can…………………. Please forward email and spread the word.
 
 
Many thanks
 
 
Six Ordinary Men
Brian, Alex, Paul, Andrew, Nigel and John
 

Easter Sunday - 8th April, 2012

Easter Sunday – 8 April, 2012
 
Happy Easter Everyone – hope you are all enjoying your roast dinners!  Many thanks to everyone for your encouraging messages – they really mean a lot to us and keep the spirits high.
 
It’s roughly mid day here now. We haven’t moved since last night – still in the tents.  The visibility isn’t good outside so we’re staying put, keeping warm and waiting for clearer skies.  Thankfully we took a chessboard with us – I spy got a tad boring!
 
Will try to update you tomorrow – as we inch closer to The Top of The World.
 
All the best
 
Six Ordinary Men doing Extraordinary Things
Brian, Alex, Andrew, Paul, Nigel and John
 

On the Ice - Days 1 and 2

Landed at Camp Barneo
 
We boarded the Russian plane for Barneo – the most bizarre flight of our lives.  Think the plane was built in the 1960’s.  Aircraft smelt of petrol and unwashed Russians.  The landing at Barneo was hair-raising – the shortest runway in the world – all made of ice.  Straight into the warm tent at Barneo where the Russians gave the guides the brief on current weather conditions, drifts of the ice and leads  (Leads are the breaks in the ice).
Next we board a Russian helicopter to be air lifted to our start point.  No heat on board and currently -36 – and that’s inside the helicopter!  No seats on the helicopter – we sat on our ski’s and sledges.  Helicopter landed in a desert of ice – and we get everything off the chopper – basically we were shoved out the door.  We were instructed to lay across our sledges as the chopper took off  due to the downdraft – otherwise, we’d lose the sledges. The chopper blades started to spin – quite scary – nothing like we have every experienced before in our lives. The chopper left – we are alone.  This is the strangest feeling we have ever felt – totally on our own now – in the middle of the Arctic Ocean.
 
First day, we walked 7 miles.  A tough day, coming across many leads and rough ice.  Bedding down for the first night was a challenge – this is the first time that we have ever set up the tents, cooked and made the throne.  We cook in one tent due to the cold.  As soon as the cooker is turned off, the condensation it causes freezes everything.  All our kit is frozen – including our sleeping bags.  Oh well, we’ll just have to cuddle up!
 
Day two – very rough going today.  Just did 5 miles – this is so tough.  Walked for 8 hours – only managed 5 miles.  Pulling sledges through massive ice blocks.  Shovelling along on ski’s, hit ice and the sledge hits you in the back of the neck.  Had to take the skis off and man handled the sledges through 10ft blocks of ice.  A lead opened up as we were crossing so we really had to get a shift on when crossing.  Good God, we can move fast when we need to!
 
We’ve just had dinner and are bedding down for the night now.  Team are tired - but all in good spirits.  Love to all – speak to you soon.
 

Off now witht the Russians

4.00pm - 5th April, 2012
 
At the airport now waiting to board the Russian plane to Camp Barneo - 89degrees North.  Slightly bemused by the stories we are hearing about this plane.  Seeemingly, there are four windows in total - 2 for us and the huskies and 2 for the pilots!  We hear that Health and Safety hasn't arrived with the Russians yet.  It's not uncommon for the pilots to be puffing away on cigars and drinking shots of vodka during the flight!  If we're lucky, we will have seat belts.  Our guide tells us that the last time he took this flight, he sat on the cargo with huskies howling around him.  But hey hoh - there's no turning back now.  Our regular clothing, toiletries, phones and every modern accessory has now been taken from us and locked away.  We've taped up our feet to prevent chaffing and blisters - hopefully the tape will stick - mind you, our feet won't see the light of day for 10 days, so it should be fine.  Now you know the other reason for the Johnsons Baby Powder eh?  Foot Rot is not for us!  We now only have the Arctic clothing we stand in until we retrieve our sledges. 
 
Many unspoken thoughts going thru our minds now -
 
Just  how cold will it be? 
Who's doing the cooking tonight? 
Will Brian manage the build and design of the first "throne" and who will be the first to bear all to the wind and use it? 
We know we will survive the elements, but will we survive Alex's snoring?
Will Paul really use those Wet Wipes?  brrrr.......
Will Andrew continue to have that grin on his face regarding the news that he is going to be a grandad again to a grandson?
Will cool dude John finally realise what he has got himself into?
Just now fast can Nigel run when we spot the first Polar Bear?
 
Tonight will probably be the biggest challenge of our lives.  Setting up our tents in temps of -40 with bitter winds around us.  We all know the plan - we've just got to stick to it now.  First tent up will be Andrew's and Paul's - then they start preparing the hot food.  When their tent is up, we will concentrate on the others.  Alex is in charge of cutting the blocks of ice for the cookers for the dried food (yum yum) and the hot drinks.  The plan is to boil approximately 3 gallons of water per night - and yes, of course, Alex has bought the biggest saw he could get on the aircraft for the ice cutting.  Brian will be busy building that throne - oh the very thought of it makes us shiver.  John says that it's Imodem all the way for him!!!  John and Nigel will be busy doing the final "digging in" of the tents - making them as wind proof as possible and securing them  to the ice - tents blowing away is just not an option.  Nigel is on Polar Bear watch too - 2 shotguns and a flare gun at the ready. 
 
Our first check in call is due at 8.00pm tonight to the Russians -  not that our Russian is very good!  The rule is that we need to call them between 8pm and 10pm each night.  If,  for whatever reason we don't, we need to call between 8am and 10am the following morning.  If we don't do that, they send out a helicopter to find us.  And then charge us 150,000stg because we forgot to call!  We'll be making those calls - don't want that bill!
 
So, good night all - we'll update you tomorrow about our first night's sleep.
 
The Six Ordinary Men doing Extraordinary Things -
Brian, Alex, Andrew, Paul, Nigel and John
 

Ice practice and sledges off to the Russians

6.00pm – 4 April, 2012
Our sledges have been packed and checked and are now off to the airport to the Russian aircraft.  Checked and double checked.  That’s it, there is no more we can do to prepare.  We’re off tomorrow.  Everyone seems to be in their own worlds now – thinking of the momentous trek that they are about to embark on.