I spoke with the Arctic Regional Operations Center in Sarnia, Ontario again this afternoon. They’ve replaced the 2008 “Ice Guy”…the new guy is Howard Kearley. I sent him all the information that I had sent to Jean Ouellet in May. Here are some of the things we talked about…
- They don’t know of anyone else who is transiting the Passage this summer (but that doesn’t mean there won’t be any others. It just means that they don’t know about the others).
- They said that one sailboat wintered over in the Passage, probably in Tuktoyaktuk.
- They have two icebreakers stationed at the southern end of Baffin Island right now. It’s not clear yet whether they will try to open up Fury & Hecla Strait early.
- One icebreaker is on its way in from the West Coast. They are focusing on the southern Arctic right now then they’ll deal with the high Arctic later.
- By the time we get into the Passage, they will have six icebreakers in various locations along our route.
- They said that the ice is “moving out fairly fast” this year (very good news!)
They had asked us to contact NORDREG (the Marine Communications Traffic Services Centre in Iqaluit) as soon as we get above 60 degrees. I have NORDREG’s phone number and I’m going to speak with them live tomorrow morning. Those are the people that we will actually be talking to on the SSB radio while we’re running. I want them to know us before we radio in for the first time.
I’m pumped. My juices are flowing. Killer picture of GERALDINE at anchor on the website.
It was 63 degrees in Cambridge Bay this afternoon! I’m packing my shorts. 63 degrees and Pizza Hut pizza — it doesn’t get any better than that!