After 8 days of some of the worst conditions I have witnessed on the arctic ocean, Parker and I had to call off the expedition due to a large open water lead many miles long that was impossible to get around to achieve our goal.
Throughout the week, Parker and I encountered significant negative southward drift, huge open water leads, massive pressure ridges, high winds and some of the warmest temperatures ever recorded on the arctic ocean this time of year. We were airlifted today the last 15 miles to the Geographic North Pole, had a quick congratulations, then flew back to Barneo Ice Station and to the Antonov aircraft back to civilization in Longyearbyen, Norway.
I am very proud of Parker’s accomplishment as he was a true expedition partner. We were one or two days ahead of all the other professional teams on the ice and I am not disappointed with our accomplishment. I feel that Parker’s will and call to young people to participate in dialogue and act now will be heard much louder due to what we witnessed. Our planet’s future lies in the hands of our youth like Parker Liautaud.
Congratulations, my friend and expedition teammate – you should be proud.