Arctic Sea Ice : Forum

Cryosphere => Arctic background => Topic started by: Tor Bejnar on July 11, 2013, 02:10:05 PM

Title: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Tor Bejnar on July 11, 2013, 02:10:05 PM
Quest through the Pole: Sailing the Arctic, from Barrow, Alaska to Spitsbergen, Svalbard
Summer 2013
French: http://www.sebroubinet.eu/ (http://www.sebroubinet.eu/)
English: http://www.dptechnology.com/lang/cn/northpole2013/index.asp (http://www.dptechnology.com/lang/cn/northpole2013/index.asp)

From their blog:
(https://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/proxy.php?request=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.dptechnology.com%2Few%2FFileServer%2Fimages%2F4881.jpg&hash=8b0cb21200e3b8a7d67b657e6a995583)
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Neven on July 11, 2013, 02:15:52 PM
Thanks for this, Tor, I didn't know they had already started. This is quite a cool expedition, as seen on the 1 hour documentary they made from the one two years back (where technical failure forced them to return to Barrow). Extremely challenging physically though. I actually think it might have been easier in the past where they could glide over large and even ice floes, whereas now they have to make their way through lots of small ice floes, not easy to sail through, too small to glide over.

Anyway, I will do a blog post on this, next week or so.
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Tor Bejnar on July 11, 2013, 02:16:31 PM
The intro from their blog:

I have no connection to this expedition; ’just discovered their website a week or two ago.  This may be the only surface attempt for the North Pole (or Santa’s swimming pool?) this year, so I expect some folks will be interested.
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Jim Hunt on July 12, 2013, 02:05:32 PM
In an entertaining extension to this story, I've just been publicly challenged to a $1000 bet (http://econnexus.org/the-arctic-joule-races-towards-the-beaufort-sea/#comment-33103) that neither the Babouchka or the Arctic Joule "reaches their destinations this year"!
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Neven on July 12, 2013, 02:37:19 PM
Interesting bet, Jim! Now I haven't followed the Arctic Joule at all, I have to admit, but I did follow Sébastien's Roubinet failed attempt two years ago, and just a couple of months ago translated the documentary he made about the endeavour. If it weren't for a battery failure I think they might have made it two years ago already, although they weren't prepared for the conditions in the Beaufort Sea, expecting large floes they could glide over, but encountering a slush of smaller floes.

Either way, I'm sure Roubinet learned a lot that time and improved his vessel. So barring any technical failures this year or a crazy storm (like they had two years ago, which was actually quite dangerous), I think they stand a very good chance of making it to Svalbard.

Should turn this into a blog post, but no time......  :-\
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Tor Bejnar on July 15, 2013, 06:02:06 PM
[Translated by computer plus common(?) sense. (A real translator might shake his or her head.)]

...We came upon our first bears, a mother and her two cubs, including one who was very curious...!

also

 ...We are in open water ... to bypass a large area of ice.  What a pleasure to speed along and swallow miles!  Advantage of 10-15 knots of wind - until it falls tomorrow morning.
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Tor Bejnar on July 20, 2013, 11:41:56 PM
Today they report very dirty ice (actually "glace très sale") and offer this picture:
(https://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/proxy.php?request=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.sebroubinet.eu%2Fphoto%252020%2520juillet%25202013.jpg&hash=ae9ca6a1cc74e640eba83d59e4657bcc)
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Laurent on July 21, 2013, 11:15:11 AM
July 21, 2013
Profitable day today since we moved 17 miles to the north. In the morning, we were still in a very dense environment, but the ice sheets were quickly separated and we could move mainly on water and downwind. The road is still remained littered with hard points to cross and white areas or water channel does not appear, especially in the fog that accompanied us all day. So while one bar, the other is standing on the roof to identify the best passages then jumps forward to getting the boat between the blocks. And we actually traveled 23 miles and we should enjoy more water tomorrow.
For now, we prefer to continue to avoid excessive concentrations of ice because the boat is still heavy and prefers to avoid too strong impact on the ice. So we opted to sail as much as possible on the water until the 75th North to get on the pack when the boat is reduced.
http://www.sebroubinet.eu/photo%2021%20juillet%202013.jpg (http://www.sebroubinet.eu/photo%2021%20juillet%202013.jpg)
(cannot upload gif, jpg ?)
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Jim Hunt on July 21, 2013, 11:29:49 AM
Let me try Laurent:

(https://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/proxy.php?request=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.sebroubinet.eu%2Fphoto%252021%2520juillet%25202013.jpg&hash=569042e96f79203a4c2a9c14a88ee353)

Presumably that's a historical image though? Where's the fog? Who's taking the picture?
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Laurent on July 21, 2013, 12:48:37 PM
There is a polar bear taking the shot, that's the only solution.  :o ;)
...Unless they put the camera on a strong ice hold in video mode, circle around and retreave the shot they want !?
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Jim Hunt on July 21, 2013, 12:54:23 PM
The Babouchka seems to be sailing into something of a storm (http://econnexus.org/a-storm-is-brewing-in-the-arctic/):

(https://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/proxy.php?request=http%3A%2F%2Feconnexus.org%2Fwp-content%2Fuploads%2F2013%2F07%2F2013-07-21_ECMWF-20130724.jpg&hash=59b07903b317550ab7bfe5bb858a449c) (http://econnexus.org/the-quest-through-the-pole-begins-in-barrow/#comment-33974)
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Tor Bejnar on July 22, 2013, 02:12:38 PM
Part of their blog entry today:
Quote
The rain falls, falls... It is the feast to the frog! We are wet, everything is wet but morale is good. Stopped early due to lack of wind ...
(translated by Bing)
I expect the wind will pick up with Arctic Storm "name to be determined on ASIB", and  unfortunately, it looks like it will be a headwind.
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Laurent on July 23, 2013, 11:26:56 AM
July 23, 2013
13,000 miles in the north today, started to sail between the ice plates and then the wind dropped, we had to row. Now it started to rain and we await the arrival of the west wind that will blow the next two days and probably change a lot the state of the ice to the north in particular our future playground
Not much animals except a few birds and two Arctic cod sighted between two icicle.
We can not wait to find a good sun to dry our gear, but for now it is apparently too much to ask Mrs. weather ... we have tasted the chocolate pudding and it is very good
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Laurent on July 24, 2013, 11:15:32 PM
July 24, 2013
Yesterday, the wind returned, as expected! We went at a good pace but the wind became stronger (30 knots in the gusts), we had to resolve to find a solid plate to tie up and wait. But the surprise was big at awakening since we did drift 12 miles overnight ... to the southeast! But we need more to deter our morale, we resume our journey, everything is fine on board.
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Laurent on July 26, 2013, 04:39:13 PM
July 26, 2013
After starting at 3H30, we had to battle an hour with the ice to find open water. Finally, we're off to the north. It is 7am the wind was again strong, which forced us to a new stop. 3 hours later we leave ... since we drive north to 5/6 knots. All is well despite some plates that slow us down. The ropes are beginning to swell with the ice but the conditions are more pleasant now. We are so happy to finally move for miles to the north.
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Tor Bejnar on July 27, 2013, 03:02:57 PM
From their journal today (translated):
Quote
… We are fast approaching the 75th parallel, symbolic marking the beginning of a more favorable terrain, where the waterways will be much rarer. Already ice sheets do not have the same face, while they were brown and battered in the south, they are now mostly very white and rather thin.
Finally we got a bit of sun that allowed us to dry our clothes and sleeping bags!
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Laurent on July 29, 2013, 01:18:33 PM
29 july 2013
That's it, we went through the 75th North, sailed all day between water and ice 20 miles in total but only 7 in a straight line to the north. But hey, we are moving and tomorrow the west wind should return, which will allow us to make a more direct route to the north. Otherwise, the water has invided a supposed waterproof box where there was some baterries  and a backup phone stored. Result: a quarter of our battery stock is screwed and we do not yet know if the phone will work again. Everything goes well on board, the ice is beautiful and our sleeping bags are almost dry.

(From : http://www.sebroubinet.eu/la-voie-du-pole_nouvelles.html (http://www.sebroubinet.eu/la-voie-du-pole_nouvelles.html))
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Laurent on July 31, 2013, 09:27:25 AM
July 31, 2013
Small weather, ice, fog, snow and moving against the conveyer belt: this is the menu for a physical but little pay day! We made ​​6.5 miles but eventually end up 2 miles from our previous position... Not very pleasant, but we always keep a good moral. Then the ice is beautiful, many belugas and swimming (involuntary) common.

All is well on board, the ice is beautiful and our sleeping bags are almost dry now !

(from a french blog : http://www.sebroubinet.eu/ (http://www.sebroubinet.eu/))
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Tor Bejnar on August 02, 2013, 07:37:08 PM
[translated - mix of Bing, Google and me!] 
Quote
August 2, 2013 ...we sailed 7 miles with a little headwind.  We found an ice floe with water spaces that are pretty well chained, and then, after some snow, even a little sun!
No bears in sight, only a few gulls who wonder why we're here ...
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Laurent on August 03, 2013, 11:46:21 PM
3 august 2013
Hello and good morning
We saw a bear when we had a break this afternoon, probably attracted by the smell of our pasta bolognese! It was a young male very curious who came within twenty meters of the boat despite our shouts. We fired three shots of lead between his feet but that did not bother him at all ... It is ultimately a flare in the legs which has pushed him away and quietly, but unfortunately our way was his. We changed our itinerary for not crossing him again ...
Today we continued to follow the water channels in doomy weather but in good spirits until the end of the day, we were tired to go to the water through this young ice that has not more than one winter.
We leave you, enjoy the warmth!

From : http://www.sebroubinet.eu/la-voie-du-pole_nouvelles.html (http://www.sebroubinet.eu/la-voie-du-pole_nouvelles.html)
(Should I admit that I am using Google translate...some work to translate google afterward )
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Tor Bejnar on August 04, 2013, 02:28:53 AM
Admit it only if you want to  ;D
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Laurent on August 05, 2013, 02:21:13 PM
August 5, 2013
Today we managed to move to the north west. We are on way to the north. Otherwise, it was quite cold, we even started having small stalactites on the boat, we are heating ourselfs with some hot tea heated with our solar panels. A little south wind would be perfect to push as north !
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Tor Bejnar on August 07, 2013, 02:12:54 PM
[translated by Google with my interpretations]
August 7, 2013
This morning [yesterday morning?] the wind shifted to the south with the arrival of the storm that is supposed to sweep the Arctic today. We started going south around a blocking floe and then were able to resume our journey north/northwest at high speed (over 10 knots during wind gusts). Our progress was good [for?] 15 hours, but the wind got too strong (35 knots), and there were too many floes to navigate around, so we decided to stop and let the strong winds pass us by. We are now in the shelter of a large floe that is drifting northeastward at 0.5 knots, and we rest. This storm is blowing especially to our north, and we hope that it clears the way by breaking up floes, creating open water. We hope this will allow us to catch up in recent days [rest from strenuous efforts?].
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Tor Bejnar on August 07, 2013, 03:09:26 PM
OR
 [new interpretation of the translation of last sentence above]
We hope this predicted more-broken ice will allow us to increase our rate of travel to make up for recent slow days.
[Neven, if he reads both the French and this, is either enjoying my struggles or wishing I would shut up!]
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Neven on August 07, 2013, 11:47:09 PM
No, keep going, Tor. I'd translate myself if I'd have the time, but I do get the updates in my mail box as well. Still haven't found the time to write a piece that does the effort justice.
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Tor Bejnar on August 09, 2013, 05:24:08 PM
[Bing, Google and I did the translating this time.]
August 9, 2013
We were able to leave after the last gusts of wind. The cyclone left a grim landscape, fractured floes and stray ice debris are living their last hours. Larger floes resisted but the cyclone snacked on them as well. We feel honored that the storm opened a channel to the NNW which is where we want to position ourselves. We still have had to cross several floes that blocked the way, including one nearly 3 miles across.

45 miles navigated yesterday; we have taken advantage of the last helpful winds of the cyclone to move northwards. Fog is very dense, we hope to find a floe strong enough to stop this night [last night]...

Next day [today], a beneficial day since we have added 36 miles to our trip-meter, with a significant portion to the North. Navigation was rather easy, staying close to the edges of tender decaying ice floes. We stayed in street clothes because we didn't need to disembark from the boat before the end of the day. The effects of the cyclone on the ice are obvious; we look forward to seeing if it had the same impact to our North.
(https://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/proxy.php?request=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.sebroubinet.eu%2Fphoto%25209%2520aout%25202013.jpg&hash=ae57249ed2dd7d7877ce261750b9e5c5)
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Laurent on August 11, 2013, 08:03:24 PM
August 11, 2013
Upon waking this morning, All the boat was covered with a thick layer of ice several centimeters around ropes and rigging. These days the temperatures are globally negative, even if today we had a bit of sun. Then we made good progress despite some obstacles, visibility was good which allowed us to find the most effective passages. with this nearly clear sky, we should be able to get good satellite picture for our tomorrow planning. It is 21h and we continue to navigate.

(From : http://www.sebroubinet.eu/la-voie-du-pole_nouvelles.html (http://www.sebroubinet.eu/la-voie-du-pole_nouvelles.html))
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Neven on August 11, 2013, 09:00:05 PM
Laurent, do you know how far North they are?
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Jim Hunt on August 11, 2013, 09:08:46 PM
Do you know how far North they are?

Their last GPS report was on the 9th, when they were at 76.227 N, 172.642 W. According to my calculations that left them just over 1500 km still to go to the pole.

http://www.sat-view.fr/interface/interface.php?login=voiedupole (http://www.sat-view.fr/interface/interface.php?login=voiedupole)
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Tor Bejnar on August 12, 2013, 04:52:14 PM
They were at 76 ° 45N - 174 ° 10W according to their August 11 post.  A technical glitch prevents the map that shows their location from working, they report.  The map roughly shows their path, and is available on their French language website referenced in first post above - click on "Sat-View".
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Laurent on August 13, 2013, 10:04:03 AM
August 13, 2013
This morning we were able to sail 10 miles before facing a pack of ice that we are going through. The wind dropped completely so we are weaving in and out between the ice with our oars. Sometimes we have to bring the boat on the plates, there is 8 miles that we are pulling the boat we are and we should soon see the end and find a better passage to the north.
We also have seen bear's tracks, we will tell you if we come across ... Otherwise it's nice and "hot" today, and even our sleeping bags have dried, a beautiful day!

(The Gps tracker is still malfunctioning)
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Tor Bejnar on August 15, 2013, 07:12:44 PM
August 15, 2013
78° N and onward-ho! This morning, we did not expect to reach this far north because there was no wind and we were stuck in an ice zone. We therefore undertook a wide detour to the south, then the wind finally decided to pick up, but from the north. Gradually, however, we managed to earn miles to the north. Waterways are emerging and we arrive at 78° N - 3° in 9 days is not bad! Otherwise, it's gray and cold [...]. But we are happy and tonight we even ate double rations to celebrate the milestone.
[translated by Google, Bing and me, with [...] for what I don't understand]
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Tor Bejnar on August 15, 2013, 09:08:42 PM
In addition, they offer this photo today.  With one sailor (it appears to me) in the picture and the other presumably taking the shot, I hope the boat is well tied down!
(https://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/proxy.php?request=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.sebroubinet.eu%2Fphoto%252015%2520aout%25202013.jpg&hash=1505ded5e1145a8ae100ce417124f295)
Boy, though, is it beautiful up there!
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Tor Bejnar on August 17, 2013, 07:02:28 PM
August 17, 2013
Yesterday we rowed much due to lack of wind … We have advanced 14 miles to the north, which is not so bad when you consider that we went through an area of ​​dense ice.
Today, it started with snow and no wind ... The spinnaker has allowed us to move at 6 knots in large areas of water with ice floes often forcing us to maneuver. The game was to weave and / or pass [over] it [;] on and [on] it went ... almost never without slowing us! Result of this beautiful day: 36 miles to the north.
[or something like this]
This is where they are (see the little circle?):
(https://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/proxy.php?request=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.sebroubinet.eu%2Fphoto%252017%2520aout%25202013.jpg&hash=a13fa9f3f5bc2f9d5726b78002ef0ae5)
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Tor Bejnar on August 19, 2013, 03:09:27 PM
Their Sat-View map is working again  :)  http://www.sat-view.fr/interface/interface.php?login=voiedupole (http://www.sat-view.fr/interface/interface.php?login=voiedupole)
The quest to the pole
Type of boat: hybrid catamaran/char-to-ice
Crew: Sébastien Roubinet and Vincent Berthet
Date Time of the last point: 2013-08-19 08:38:00 (French time)
Last map update: 2013-08-19 14:48:29
Latitude: N 79 ° 51.65  Longitude: W 176 ° 52.64
Cap: 156 °  [Cap" is in French and is unchanged by Bing or Google translater.  Can anybody reading this explain?]
Speed: 0.55 kts = 1.02 km/h
Average speed: 0.91 kts = 1.69 km/h
Distance: 941.27 Nm = 1743.52 miles
Tracking generated on the platform Sat-View - http://www.sat-view.fr/interface/interface.php?login=voiedupole (http://www.sat-view.fr/interface/interface.php?login=voiedupole)
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Jim Hunt on August 19, 2013, 03:51:22 PM
Cap is in French and is unchanged by Bing or Google translater.  Can anybody reading this explain?]

I had always assumed it meant "Heading", and having just double checked (http://translate.google.com/#en/fr/Heading) it seems I was right for a change!
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Laurent on August 20, 2013, 04:57:31 PM
August 19, 2013 - In search of the black cloud

This morning the fog quickly dropped, we did apply that moment to search water areas with our hardly acquired knowledge. It is to observe the clouds: if they are white and very bright there is ice below, if they are gray there is water and ice and finally if they are black that is a large body of water. With a bit of practice and luck (good clouds), we have a map of the ice ahead looking at the sky. That did helped us to make more than 20 miles in the north. Stalactites grow well throughout the ship, as to future conditions, they are not very good with fairly strong north winds, that should melt the ice, which is positive for us.
Our health? It's all right even if we have lose some weight because we did rationed at the beginning. From now on, we will be able to resume normal rations. Regarding frostbite, Vincent has got the nose a little white, but nothing serious. My feet are better, the finger that froze the first week became blue and brown, i was not proud, but he is again white and sensible, like new! I still have cold feet and Vincent the hands but it is manageable...

Mister Wayne did not tell us that !   ;)

From : http://www.sebroubinet.eu/ (http://www.sebroubinet.eu/)
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Tor Bejnar on August 20, 2013, 06:02:59 PM
20/08/2013 17:51:14
Latitude: N 80° 0.65
Longitude: W 175° 19.16

Another milestone!
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Laurent on August 22, 2013, 07:17:02 PM
August 22, 2013
For several days, we thought about our life and our dry sleeping bags sealed in some waterproof bags under the bridge. But yesterday, during an inspection, we realized we had sea water inside the bags. It will be very hard if not impossible to dry them because of the weather we have: A hard blow to our morale. So we are blocked by the north wind too strong, it's raining and everything is wet ... And we are drifting south 10 miles per day, that is the picture of these days!
The nice thing is that the ice breaks up and melts before our eyes, and we slept well to leave tomorrow in shape !

from : http://www.sebroubinet.eu (http://www.sebroubinet.eu)
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Laurent on August 24, 2013, 02:11:53 PM
August 24, 2013
This morning, late check out due to weather uncertain. A front was expected with winds of 20 to 30 knots gusting to 50 knots. The wind was getting stronger but seemed so uncertain so we called Pierre Lasnier, the weather router, to know what it was, and after checking, he told me that the front had disappeared and the wind were to weaken, let's go to the north then (thank you Peter) and it works well, we are approaching the 80 ° 50N navigating on water and ice to cross the plates that stand in our way.

from : http://www.sebroubinet.eu/ (http://www.sebroubinet.eu/)

Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Laurent on August 26, 2013, 12:45:44 PM
August 26, 2013
Yesterday we sailed in the ice against the wind and did begin to catch up our 3 miles night drift loss. The plates are larger than in the south, a little thicker but still very smooth. They are quite packed together by the wind, we hope it will finally turn and leave unpacked wider passages. In any case, we are happy because we are making our miles, even though our days end at 23h.
We have reach the 81parallel !
This morning, we were able to go directly into the water 5 mile in the north before getting on the first plate. Since then, we have climbed on 10 plates until 8:00, a record! Before going into a more dense area. If it snows, it's seriously refreshing but at the same time, it is less humid. we are dreaming a good strong wind in our back !
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: jbg on August 27, 2013, 05:15:34 AM
In an entertaining extension to this story, I've just been publicly challenged to a $1000 bet (http://econnexus.org/the-arctic-joule-races-towards-the-beaufort-sea/#comment-33103) that neither the Babouchka or the Arctic Joule "reaches their destinations this year"!
I see there's been forward progress but would anyone mistake this for a smooth sail?
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Jim Hunt on August 27, 2013, 01:28:25 PM
I see there's been forward progress but would anyone mistake this for a smooth sail?

I doubt that, and I don't think anyone anticipated "a smooth sail". The Arctic Joule team (http://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/index.php/topic,387) in particular characterised their expedition as "The Last First", in part because they have no sail!
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Jim Hunt on August 29, 2013, 01:01:10 PM
The August 29th report from Babouchka, including a fair bit of poetic licence on my part!

Quote
A lot has happened over the last 2 days. First we passed 82°N, after a 19 hour day and much effort. Then we were forced to stop for 30 hours waiting for some strong winds to subside, which allowed us to rest properly. The next day began with temperatures of minus 20 degrees and a large floe to cross to warm us up.

Once we reached water again we had to shoot through dozens of gaps between the ice floes, until finally we arrived in an area where the snow had formed a surface like molasses. Then to move forward, we had to crush the molasses with our feet while rowing, all with a boat not strong enough to push through by force. So last night at midnight we had no strength for anything, and we collapsed.

Today temperatures are warmer, minus 5°C, but we found the same sea conditions. The sun is finally rising, and tonight we will stop earlier (9 PM) to get the duvets dry, perform a CTD reading and do some tinkering.

(https://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/proxy.php?request=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.sebroubinet.eu%2Fphoto%252029%2520aout%25202013.jpg&hash=2ba568218c628eae183f8a7f916b3b48)
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Laurent on August 29, 2013, 01:21:56 PM
The gap that is opening in the pack from the pacific to the atlantic should allow them to sail on a highway !
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Jim Hunt on August 29, 2013, 04:15:40 PM
Maybe not if there ends up being a "surface like molasses" for much of the way?
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Laurent on August 29, 2013, 04:59:25 PM
Will see how it is going on !
I bet for a clearance within two days ! euhh no 3 days...(?) ;)
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Tor Bejnar on August 30, 2013, 09:14:09 PM
A rare English language report dated 8/26 from http://www.dptechnology.com/lang/cn/northpole2013/index.asp (http://www.dptechnology.com/lang/cn/northpole2013/index.asp) adds to the more regular French updates:
Quote
Yesterday, Seb and Vince passed the 82nd parallel north, which means that they now have less distance to cover from their present location to the North Pole than from the pole to Svalbard and the Island of Spitsbergen, which is just under the 81st parallel on the other side of the pole.
 
Although they now travel at a desirable speed, due in part because of melting ice and favorable wind, the eight degrees left to travel is quite a distance in such a small craft. The distance to the pole is now 480 nautical miles, which is 552 miles or 889 kilometers.
 
Seb and Vince would love to take advantage of some downwind conditions to cover the remaining distance as fast as possible, but no luck so far. Pulling or pushing the Babouchka remains part of their daily load, as they are still within a damp northerly front that makes sailing tricky between plates of ice.

It looks like things will get better in a few days, according to forecasters. Hopefully they will enjoy some sun to dry their spare clothes because, at these latitudes, equipment that is supposedly waterproof is definitely not.
 
The frostbite is also getting much better. Seb has now fully recovered feeling in his toes and their color is back to normal. And while they continue to suffer from the cold much more than expected, their passion and commitment carry them onward in battle. Soon they will make it and we will see our ESPRIT logo live from one of the two webcams installed at the North Pole. Go, Seb and Vince, go!
(I've been mostly too busy to visit the ASIB/F this week. Thanks, Laurent, for keeping up!)
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Neven on August 30, 2013, 09:18:03 PM
I've been holding my breath for these guys for weeks now, with all the bad weather etc. I should've given them some attention on the ASIB, but I'm glad I didn't, out of fear of jinxing things. I really, really hope they'll make it. This is truly heroic stuff of the Amundsen-type.
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Jim Hunt on September 01, 2013, 07:38:33 PM
I'm afraid you'll have to hold your breath for a while longer Neven:

Quote
Sébastian and Vincent have triggered their distress beacon.

More info on my blog (http://econnexus.org/arctic-voyages-2013-update-2/).
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Neven on September 01, 2013, 08:22:43 PM
I'm afraid you'll have to hold your breath for a while longer Neven:

Quote
Sébastian and Vincent have triggered their distress beacon.

More info on my blog (http://econnexus.org/arctic-voyages-2013-update-2/).

Poor Roubinet. I translated the documentary he made of his first try, and when they decided to abort because their batteries were dying on them, he was absolutely devastated. Crying like a little boy, and not surprisingly, given the extreme conditions.

The idea is a good one - to 'skate' over large floes using a sail where there's no open water -, but maybe the Arctic has changed too much for an expedition of this kind. Of course, this year has been even more difficult weather-wise. But maybe they should've started much earlier, maybe even at the end of May.

I hope they can get out of there, and if they do, that they give it another try next year or the year after that.
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Laurent on September 02, 2013, 08:15:21 PM
That doesn't bode well !!!
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Tor Bejnar on September 02, 2013, 11:39:11 PM
from http://www.dptechnology.com/lang/cn/northpole2013/index.asp (http://www.dptechnology.com/lang/cn/northpole2013/index.asp)
Quote
1-Sep-2013

Saturday morning, Sebastien and Vincent have triggered their distress beacon. It means that the Quest through the Pole stops here, at 82° 14 ' of Latitude North and 171° 47' of Longitude West. But the adventure continues as they are now hoping for rescue.

Sebastien and Vincent pushed the decision as long as they could, discussing it with their forecasters, routers, and specialists, but all conclusions tie in: they are completely blocked by the ice that came back two weeks earlier than last and previous years. We knew that the last days had been very hard as they were battling against a strong northerly front forcing them to tack the whole time, sailing against the wind, against the current, and against the drifting ice blocks, permanently wet. Yesterday was the worse with just 1.8 nautical mile won in 17 hours of efforts to compare to the 10 nautical miles lost because of the southerly drift of the ice floe.

They are almost as far as we can be from any coast,and there have no way to come back by themselves.

Except for their mood, they are in good shape, boat and equipment are OK, and they could definitely continue if they were in "normal" conditions. The ice is clearly reforming with very low negative temperatures, unusual drift and still 460 miles to go for the pole. Sebastien had been expecting an improvement of the weather until the last day, but the latest maps, ice prevision, and wind forecast are and will stay opposed to their progression. It would take them much too long to just reach the pole while in three weeks, they will be in the dark the whole day.

They are in Russian waters under US competence, the center of assistance has been informed, and the Marine Rescue Operations are looking for a solution. The Russians have contacted Sebastien directly with no result because of language difficulties. The options are either an ice-breaker or maybe a plane as they are close to a very large flat ice plate. Nothing clear so far. We will keep you posted as soon as we get news.
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Jim Hunt on September 03, 2013, 01:14:41 AM
A Google translation of http://www.france3.fr/emissions/thalassa/blog-actu/?p=1814 (http://www.france3.fr/emissions/thalassa/blog-actu/?p=1814)

Quote
The Russian icebreaker "Admiral Makarov" was sent in the eastern Arctic, to rescue the French crew said Monday the head of the Russian Marine Rescue Centre, Dmitri Smirnov, the official news agency ITAR-TASS. "The French travelers have reserves of food and fuel for ten days. This is quite sufficient to await rescue" he assured. The icebreaker is expected to arrive in the area on Wednesday morning.

http://www.sailwx.info/shiptrack/shipposition.phtml?call=UGSN (http://www.sailwx.info/shiptrack/shipposition.phtml?call=UGSN)

Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Laurent on September 03, 2013, 10:53:04 PM
September 3, 2013
There is 3 days now Sebastien and Vincent triggered their distress beacon. They tried everything they believed feasable until the last moment, but poor weather conditions present and especially future force them to give up!
Going by their own means is impossible, they were forced to trigger their beacon. They're fine, though vexed.
Here are the words they send us:
...
"This morning we tried to navigate around the water area spotted yesterday, but the crust of ice slowed us too. Around noon, we had advanced 0.8 miles which confirmed our concern in recent days. We then suddenly stopped, looked at, analyzed the ice charts and weather forecast for the week and we had to face the facts ... For two or three days, the ice on the path to the north pole is building up negative temperatures are announced for the next 8 days. The trap closes earlier than expected ...
A phenomenon we expected 15 days later and adds to unusual and adverse conditions we encounter since the beginning of the expedition (contrary winds and drifting).
After lengthy discussions, we felt it was becoming too dangerous to venture further north. It is vital to try to reach the nearest land.
There is 4/5 days, viewing our progress and the ice charts, we were very confident about the success of the expedition. The sudden change in conditions has surprised us, and the decision was therefore very difficult to take.
Currently we are only a hundred miles from the north pole of inaccessibility, the center of the Arctic Ocean, the furthest point from any land, then our adventure is not over ... "

Sebastian and Vince
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Jim Hunt on September 04, 2013, 12:42:35 PM
Séb and Vincent (and Babouchka!) were picked up by the Admiral Makarov earlier today.

Much more on my blog at "Admiral Makarov Meets Babouchka in the Central Arctic (http://econnexus.org/admiral-makarov-meets-babouchka-in-the-central-arctic/)".
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: jbg on September 04, 2013, 10:57:29 PM
The idea is a good one - to 'skate' over large floes using a sail where there's no open water -, but maybe the Arctic has changed too much for an expedition of this kind. Of course, this year has been even more difficult weather-wise. But maybe they should've started much earlier, maybe even at the end of May.

I hope they can get out of there, and if they do, that they give it another try next year or the year after that.
Not that Franklin did so well either. Or Hudson.
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: davidsanger on September 05, 2013, 01:24:17 PM
(https://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/proxy.php?request=http%3A%2F%2Fimg.over-blog.com%2F500x370%2F4%2F56%2F87%2F32%2FGens-de-mer%2FLa-Voie-du-Pole-recuperation-par-le-brise-glace-admiral-Mak.JPG&hash=02e86dc25fb552503cad519be049958a)

Les deux navigateurs français bloqués en Arctique sains et saufs à bord de l'Admiral Makarov

The two French sailors trapped in the Arctic are safe and sound aboard the Admiral Makarov

http://www.actunautique.com/article-les-deux-navigateurs-fran-ais-bloques-en-arctique-sains-et-saufs-a-bord-de-l-admiral-makarov-119866915.html (http://www.actunautique.com/article-les-deux-navigateurs-fran-ais-bloques-en-arctique-sains-et-saufs-a-bord-de-l-admiral-makarov-119866915.html)
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Tor Bejnar on September 09, 2013, 08:51:12 PM
The saga continues...
Quote
6-Sep-2013

The Admiral Makarov is now in sight of the harbor at Pevek.
 In the last few days of travel from the frozen wilds, Sébastien and Vincent have rested and perhaps even gained back a little of the weight they lost throughout their icy battle.

And though the threat of physical danger is now over, the beaurocratic adventure is just beginning. As Sébastien and Vincent are entering Russia without visas through a highly guarded harbor far from an immigration office with the authority to issue the proper documents, regular protocol dictates that sorting everything out could take two to three weeks.
 
Concerning the boat and its cargo — including the scientific equipment and samples — we have no clue how and when (hopefully not if) the Babouchka will make it out of Russia. What we do know is that it won’t be simple, but luck is never far away.

In a splendid coincidence, the French boat “Tara Expedition” is in Pevek and its captain offered to lend our heroes a hand. So far, the Russian administration, the French consulate, and the captains of both the Admiral Makarov and the Tara have given the okay and made the arrangements for the two boats to meet off shore to transfer Sébastien and Vincent to the Tara.

More to come ...
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Tor Bejnar on September 10, 2013, 06:19:15 PM
Quote
Sébastien, Vincent and the Babouchka finally made it to the Russian port city of Pevek, but without the precious documents granting them the right to actually stand on Russian ground.

Transfer from the Admiral Makarov to the Tara was cleared for the men but not for the materials, which means that our friends left the Babouchka behind as they boarded the expedition sailboat Tara in the midst of her scientific mission in the Arctic.
...
Sébastien and Vincent will stay aboard the Tara until her next stop, in Tuktoyaktuk, Canada.
 
Read more, and see links to Russian news accounts and Tara's expedition website & mission: http://www.dptechnology.com/lang/cn/northpole2013/index.asp (http://www.dptechnology.com/lang/cn/northpole2013/index.asp)
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Tor Bejnar on September 19, 2013, 01:52:08 PM

TARA (the french arctic expedition sailboat) arrived at Tuktoyaktuk, Northwest Terr., Canada! Vincent and Sebastien are one step closer to their homes in Quebec and in France, respectively.
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Jim Hunt on September 23, 2013, 09:39:22 AM
I discovered this morning via his comment on my blog that Vincent at least is now safe and sound and back at home:

http://econnexus.org/admiral-makarov-meets-babouchka-in-the-central-arctic/#comment-44205 (http://econnexus.org/admiral-makarov-meets-babouchka-in-the-central-arctic/#comment-44205)
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Jim Hunt on September 26, 2013, 12:58:14 PM
More from Vincent Berthet on econnexus.org (http://econnexus.org/admiral-makarov-meets-babouchka-in-the-central-arctic/#comment-44968):

Quote
Regarding scientific data, CTD profiles and ice thickness measurements are still to be processed by our scientific coordinator. We also sampled heavy cryoconite and are looking forward to know what's inside!

Thank you again and congratulations to you and Neven for your blogs.
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Laurent on June 11, 2014, 08:44:19 PM
http://www.sebroubinet.eu/english/home.html (http://www.sebroubinet.eu/english/home.html)

For those with a lot of money, they are sailing a DVD...
Below on the right.
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Jim Hunt on July 03, 2014, 04:50:59 PM
And now an English language trailer. Babouchka - The North Pole. A Return to Hell.

Teaser BABOUCHKA THE NORTH POLE:A RETURN TO HELL (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DPmrXyyWDSQ#ws)
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Neven on July 03, 2014, 10:02:10 PM
Coincidentally, I translated a lot of this footage to Dutch for a French TV programme. Again, very impressive footage, giving a much better sense for an Arctic junkie like me of what the Arctic is like on the ground.

I sincerely hope Sébastien gives it another shot next year, but that they go as early as possible. I wish I was tough enough to go with him.
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Tor Bejnar on April 25, 2016, 08:00:14 PM
From http://www.sebroubinet.eu/accueil.html (http://www.sebroubinet.eu/accueil.html) we have (will have) LA VOIE DU PÔLE - 2017 Traverse of the Arctic Ocean. 

Google translated:
Quote
Sebastian, Rodolphe and Benoît are preparing for a new attempt of the Arctic Ocean crossing under sail in 2017. Here we go again but this time, three! Sébastien and Rodolphe were joined by Benoît Lequin, a sailor and technician confirmed.

While Sebastian uses his wintering on Greenland's east coast to refine its preparation in extreme conditions (hunting, material testing ... ), Benoit is responsible for project communication and is preparing to begin construction of the new gear polar; it also works with Rodolphe, looking for partners.
Other information about this future expedition is available on their website (http://www.sebroubinet.eu/accueil.html) (in French)

For example (also Google translated)
Quote
During the summers 2015 and 2016, they offer cruises for you to discover, in small groups, some of this wilderness, as the fjord of Scoresby Sund, one of the largest and most fabulous of the world, in total immersion ... in the middle of nature, wildlife, flora, ice and lights.
and
Quote
We offer three cruises, but remain, however, open to any other proposals, such as hosting scientific teams, sports ... It is also possible to join us on board for delivery between Greenland, Iceland and France ...
I hope to remember to start a thread next year when this materializes - or someone else might beat me to it.  :)
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Neven on April 25, 2016, 08:18:55 PM
They need to go as early as possible. It's probably still too cold now, but imagine riding that Beaufort Gyre for three weeks! They'd make it for sure after that.
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Tor Bejnar on March 28, 2017, 07:16:41 PM
Crossing the Arctic Ocean by Sail (http://www.sebroubinet.eu/)

It looks like they are skipping 2017 and will make a run for it in 2018.  Google Translate offers:
Quote
Sébastien, Benoît and Pierre-Yves are preparing for a new attempt to cross the Arctic Ocean by 2018. It's time to go, but this time, three! Benoît Lequin and Pierre-Yves, sailors and experienced technicians joined Sébastien. They have, among other things, crossed the Atlantic in both directions on a non-habitable catamaran of 6m.
 Sébastien, for his part, took advantage of his wintering on the east coast of Greenland to fine-tune the preparation in extreme conditions (hunting, testing equipment ...). Today, all three are involved in the construction of the new Polar gear as well as looking for partners
They've got a boatload of sponsors!  Their website includes a list of "Connections" (in French: "Liens") that includes (of many, this one in English) "The passive igloo project (http://igloo.sailworks.net/index.html)".

I imagine this thread will go back into hibernation...
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Tor Bejnar on July 24, 2017, 05:54:06 PM
An English language page has
Quote
La Voie Du Pôle
2018 Traversée de L’Océan Artique à la Voile
something like:
Via the Pole
2018 Sailing Across the Arctic Ocean
Quote
Sebastien Roubinet and Vincent Berthet are crossing the Arctic Ocean, through water and ice, with only the wind and their own stamina to carry them. The departure is set from Alaska with arrival in Spitsbergen via the North Pole, after nearly 3000 km (1750 nautical miles). They will be aboard a very peculiar vessel, a catamaran / ice boat hybrid capable of sailing on both water and ice.  When the winds will be favorable, the sails will be able to carry them; otherwise they will need to tow the boat themselves for two, maybe three months… without any external assistance.
 What is their motivation? Several reasons: a technological bet, a sporting challenge requiring extraordinary physical and mental health, and love of the Polar Regions. Love, and therefore fear for those countries threatened by recent climate changes.
Back to hibernation...
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Jim Hunt on July 24, 2017, 08:02:51 PM
Sebastien Roubinet and Vincent Berthet are crossing the Arctic Ocean

The English language page is out of date. Your quote refers to the 2013 expedition. From the French Language page:

Quote
Sébastien, Benoît et Pierre-Yves se préparent pour une nouvelle tentative de la traversée de l’Océan Arctique à la voile en 2018.

https://vimeo.com/190234557
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Tor Bejnar on July 24, 2017, 08:55:19 PM
I wondered why only two individuals are named, but the heading 'picture' does include the term "2018" which suggested it was not referring to 2013.  I didn't think to contrast the equivalent page in French that mentions 2018 in the text (and is the text I 'translated' in March).
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Neven on July 09, 2018, 07:20:52 PM
Roubinet is going for third time lucky. Latest entry (http://www.sebroubinet.eu/la-voie-du-pole_nouvelles.html) (Day 19, July 8th?):

Quote
Jour 19

Aujourd'hui, encore pas trop avancés mais c'est pas grave, on fait ce que l'on peut avec les conditions que l'on a et surtout on fait attention au matériel et à l'équipe afin d'être au top pour la suite.
Dans les bonnes nouvelles, le système électrique pour chauffer l'eau marche très bien depuis le départ ; on a donc utilisé moins d'une bouteille de gaz (450g).
Autres bonne nouvelle, les plaques de glace se relâchent et nous donnent un tout petit peu d'eau, ça devrait s'arranger un peu on l'espère.
Voilà l'ambiance est au beau fixe et on est heureux d'être là

I do hope they report on the storm a bit. And I hope even more that they make it this year. Does anyone know about any map to see their progress?

Oh wait, it's on the website, here (https://www.arcgis.com/apps/webappviewer/index.html?id=fc7daca7939043fd9c8c10062b319ec7&extent=640830.6443%2C-1049502.1439%2C3303198.0713%2C413214.0879%2C5936).
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Neven on July 09, 2018, 07:29:42 PM
Hmmm, they haven't come very far yet. Why don't they leave one month earlier? It's not too cold, right?

But given the preponderance of cyclones, it might be a good idea to stick to the north coast of the CAA. If they're lucky the ice might even detach from the coast, allowing them to sail for many miles. And they're closer if they need to be rescued.
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Tor Bejnar on July 09, 2018, 08:17:25 PM
Some Google Translate from here (http://www.sebroubinet.eu/) and here (http://www.sebroubinet.eu/la-voie-du-pole_nouvelles.html):
Quote
Day 19
Today is Sunday. We took advantage of part of the afternoon to empty the boat and empty the port bladder from its air; It was Seb who played the contortionists to go put it back in the hull and avoid the creases. The weather is cool (some snowflakes) and overcast. Always blocks and blocks, small, large, floating or stacked, of all sizes. It's been like this for more than a week, we are experiencing these chaotic ice conditions accompanied by a strong west-east drift that pushes us full is, against our will, destroying our efforts to climb to the north.

But we are confident for the next, the boat slips well, very well, the crew is solid, the atmosphere is really good and the happy news is that, for a few hours, we have stopped drifting! We hope that the ice will quickly disperse and leave us free lanes.

Quote
Today, still not too advanced but it is not serious, we do what we can with the conditions that one has and especially we pay attention to the equipment and the team in order to be on top for the next.
 In the good news, the electrical system for heating the water works very well from the start; Less than one gas cylinder (450g) was used.
 Other good news, the ice sheets are loosening and give us a little bit of water, it should work out a little hopefully.
 This is the atmosphere is beautiful and we are happy to be there

The routine!

In the evening, after the efforts of the day and after anchoring the boat in front of the wind on a beautiful plate, slumped and stowed the sails, we install the tent canvas above the cockpit. Then we dry the combis and put on good hot and dry socks while the meal rehydrates, then we put it to heat and around 19-20h we go to the table. We haven't started to do the scientific surveys yet, but it's coming soon. Seb receives the e-mails (ice cards), looks at the weather forecast for the coming days... Sometimes we take advantage of it to go and recognise the terrain for the next day, but less and less because, with the drift and the currents of the night, it changes so much configuration!

Then we discuss, before arranging to get warm in our duvet one after the other because the cabin is size XS, we read a moment and Dodo!
 In the morning, Seb (who sleeps at the door) starts the water to be heated which he pours into our breakfast bowls. "Wake up the Groundhogs!" A new day begins...
Some bits of info I find interesting:  "snowflakes", "strong west-east drift", "the ice sheets are loosening and give us a little bit of water" and "We haven't started to do the scientific surveys yet, but it's coming soon."  I'm guessing "on lit un moment et dodo !" translated as "we read a moment and Dodo!" means "... we fall asleep quickly".  Anybody who actually knows French want to correct me?

Image from somewhere on their website
 (https://www.arcgis.com/apps/webappviewer/index.html?id=fc7daca7939043fd9c8c10062b319ec7&extent=640830.6443%2C-1049502.1439%2C3303198.0713%2C413214.0879%2C5936)
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Neven on July 09, 2018, 08:35:44 PM
Dodo in this context means 'time to sleep'. It's a word used for children (faire dodo = go to sleep).
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Tor Bejnar on July 24, 2018, 05:52:26 PM
Google Translation of some of the text from their website (http://www.sebroubinet.eu/la-voie-du-pole_nouvelles.html). 
Quote
Day 34
 72° N!!!!
 5pm Navigation not stop today, tired but so happy.
 We're not stopping them anymore!
...
Beluga (text by Eric)
 At night, on the boat, I hear some funny noises. Here, when there is no wind, the silence is deafening! You can hear sounds of footsteps from far away, or else two of us speak very distinctly even several hundred meters away.
 Is it ice that works? It looks more like organic noises. I take the head out of the tent, yes, no doubt, marine mammals are close, coming to the surface to breathe. We rush to the open water area where the noises come from, in a white-grey-black setting, in the midst of the mist you can see movement, white backs, probably belugas in a stroll. It's nice to have life, it feels less lonely!

Day 33
 71° N, it takes off
 We found the water!
 Today we travelled 15 miles on the water and 23.6 miles in all!
 We had to wait until the afternoon, after 8000 on the ice, to begin to see darker clouds, which means that underneath, there is water! We aim directly at the dark grey and we find... water!
 It is done in two stages: we sail on the water for a short time before returning to the ice. Then we find the water with the fog. At that time, we are far from imagining that we will sail until late in the evening. And that's what we do. We see almost no ice and we are looking for fresh water to drink (water from the melting lakes on the ice). Who would have thought?

Day 32
 Everything is fine today: big flat plates on which we get to go fast. We run next to the boat and then jump on it for the passage of the melting lakes and so on... at times, it goes very fast! Unfortunately, between the plates, there are always more technical and slower areas and this damned current that brings us all the time to the southeast.
 Small mathematical problem: in 24h, if we travel 16000 to the north and the drift takes us back to 12000 in the southeast, how much is our final progression to the north?
 The day still ended with a last mile on the water!!!!
...
Day 24
...
The ground is full of hidden traps and depending on where we put our feet, we can go straight down through this thin layer. The game begins!
 All three are wetted, one after the other; And we mock each other. Vincent: "I am at the front to share my observations on the next steps I have before me until GRAOUCHHHH!!!! Up to the hip! The water easily enters the inside of my trousers and spreads smoothly inside my boots. Seb arrives quickly to help me out. Fortunately, the edge was strong enough and I go back "on the other hand, it is not cold, 6 degree and for the next few days, the weather announces 15 °! It should melt. Yes!
Info on map (https://www.arcgis.com/apps/webappviewer/index.html?id=fc7daca7939043fd9c8c10062b319ec7&extent=640830.6443%2C-1049502.1439%2C3303198.0713%2C413214.0879%2C5936):
Quote
position
date 24/07/2018
lat 72.3406
lon -143.5570
Map of the ice in the area (https://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/index.php/topic,2278.msg164263.html#msg164263) part of Ice Shieldz' post.

Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Andreas T on August 16, 2018, 11:41:02 AM
If my french is sufficient to get this right, they have decided to turn south. They  say the wind is against them and the safety margins are getting narrow for getting to the pole and making it out without being picked up by some ship.
http://www.sebroubinet.eu/la-voie-du-pole_nouvelles.html (http://www.sebroubinet.eu/la-voie-du-pole_nouvelles.html)
Title: Re: Quest through the Pole: Sailing from Barrow to Spitsbergen
Post by: Neven on August 16, 2018, 03:12:41 PM
Yes, I read that too. It's a shame, but at least this time they do not have to get picked by a (very expensive) helicopter due to some technical failure. They were unlucky with that batch of ice off Barrow this year, but I still think they should leave earlier, as early as possible.

Maybe it's simply impossible to go across the pole from the Pacific to the Atlantic. Paradoxically, it would probably have been easier in the past, with much larger and possibly flatter ice floes, and more of a Beaufort Gyre.

Anyway, kudos to them for trying. I enjoyed reading their updates (containing little nuggets of gold about the sea ice).