10 months ago the plan was simple: "Let's sail up the west coast of Greenland and attempt some first ascents on huge granite big walls rising straight out of the sea".
Of course this sounded like a great idea, so when my friend Pete Hill from the Oxford uni mountaineering club asked me to join him, Tom Codrington and Ian Faulkner I said yes without a second thought.
Now, 10 months and literally hundreds of hours of planning later, I still can't believe it's actually happening! We've overcome many problems, not the least of which was finding a boat and someone to sail it! (up to now I've spent no more than about two hours on a boat in my life). The answer came from Clive and Angela Lilienthal who have kindly offered the services of their 38' yacht "The Cosmic Dancer".
The Cosmic Dancer left Newfoundland in Canada nearly two weeks ago with Tom, Pete and the two sailors, tomorrow me and Ian are flying to Illusiat on the west coast of Greenland. Here we will wait (an as yet unspecified amount of time) for the boat to arrive. The last I heard the boat was "hove to" in a gale, I'm not entirely sure what this means but I'm pretty sure it's not good! So we could be there a little while. Not to worry, we've got plenty to be getting on with, such as sourcing mountains of food and finding a gun to fend off polar bears!!
I've always imagined that people going on an expedition like this would have everything planned, down to the last minute detail. Now, on the brink of leaving, I realise this can't possibly be the case. There are so many unknowns!
This is it. A real life adventure.
We will try and update our facebook page and website periodically along the way if you're interested in following our progress.
Currently our expedition has kindly received sponsorship from:
The Alpine Club
The Mount Everest Foundation
The Andrew Croft Memorial Fund
The Gino Watkins Memorial Fund
The Arctic Club
Let's hope we can do some cool stuff to make it all worth it!
Here are a couple of the walls that have already received some attention over the last few years (hence the photos), to give you an idea of the kind of thing we'll be doing:
"The Impossible Wall" about 800m high:
"Red Wall" about 300m high: