Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Gear Shipping

This morning we had a briefing session at The Club Croata (Croatian Club) in downtown Punta Arenas. Nick, one of the owners of the ALE (Antarctic Logistics and Expeditions - a mother company of ANI Adventure Network International) . He went over Antarctic safety guidelines, how to preserve the pristine environment, and all other good stuffs.

So for our trip, we have to pack all our solid waste. Good thing they will be frozen and packed away in the sled, not like those mountaineering trips where you put them in your backpack :)

We were told to allow max 30 kg (66 lbs) of checked in lugggage (ie, gears). Any extra kilogram will be charged $60 -- very expensive even compared to those American domestic flight. They will pick up my luggage first, cuz I stay furthest. Most people stay downtown, but me. I go cheap staying in a bed and breakfast a little, out of the way, 25 mins walk to downtown.

I rushed back to hostel and check my luggage again. I packed them yesterday. Together they definitely weigh over 30 kgs. I had to take out and exchange a few things (non essential, including some of the cookies :( - I still have a lot of them though, enough to last me for the trip).

They just came picked up the luggage. Total was 32 kg. Mark was nice enough to let me know not to worry about the extra weight. Thanks guys.

I also met the German guy. His name is Andy. I didn't have the spelling of his last name. He's an avid downhill skier. His "extreme" trip would be backpacking in the Sahara dessert and went to the North Pole on an ice breaker. He said to prepare for this, he went to ski slopes in the Alps to get some altitude exposure, and obviously skiing. Seems like a nice and fun guy to hang out with.

I didn't have a chance to meet the Chinese person. There were a few people from China at the briefing as well, but most of them are going elsewhere, not the ski to the last degree.

The British couple are already at the Patriot Hills. They custom made their trip, going to the Patriot Hills earlier to practice.

My guide is also at the basecamp currently.

So tomorrow, if the weather is good for flying, Mark will call me at around 6am and I have to be within 15 mins. If we cannot fly out tomorrow, he would let me know at 10, and a tentative schedule for the next flight.

I just have a few last thing to do, and one of them is sew the nose beak on my new pair of googles.

Now I'm expedition ready.

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