Saturday, August 13, 2011


Two if by Sea

Old Pulteney, an also-ran Highland Scotch from the most northern distillery which no one has every heard of (and which I find has a peaty nose and a finish of peat with just the slightest under-taste of excrement), has decided to get some publicity by paying some Brit masochists to attempt to row to the pole, the magnetic north pole, that is, or kinda, which is actually a few hundred miles west north west off a northwest corner of Ellesmere island in Nunavut Territory, Canada. You can follow the fellows' progress, such as it is, here. They started at Resolute on Cornwallis Island (there's a name near and dear to us revolting colonials), one of the Queen Elizabeth Islands way, way up north, and now they're stuck on the north coast of Devon Island about 300 klicks north of where they started (as the crow flies--if it wasn't too cold for crows) but still hundreds of miles from the pole, and nearly as far from their stated goal, the location of the magnetic pole 15 years ago, when it was much nearer to Ellesmere. They needed to get to Ellef Ringnes Island in the Sverdrup Islands to avoid being considered loser jokes but they are a long way from there. Now their way is completely blocked by thick sea ice as far as the eye can see. Who could have anticipated that? Really, isn't the Northern Ocean becoming ice free in Summer? No? Oh well, there's what, 4 more weeks of melting before the big freeze begins? Who am I to say they can't make it.

I was just kidding about the excrement under-taste. It's just more peat. Peat with an under-taste of peat. Just the Scotch I fancy.

UPDATE: Can't say that this news endears me to the lads and their sponsor.

UPDATE 2: Here's what the satellite shows today. Looks a little icy north of the intrepid rowers.

UPDATE 3: One commenter over at Watts Up With That said that when these guys start to drag the boat over the sea ice some of the team has to stay in the boat and pretend to row. I laughed out loud.


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