After travelling north to Foyn Harbour, the next Mountaineering team had an adventure of a different kind. Ice climbing again but this time we hiked to the top of the cliff first and then had to be lowered to the bottom before climbing back up.
Before we could do this however, we needed to actually get off the shore and onto the top. The guides worked hard to get a good safe path for us up and off the beach – the deep soft snow made for good footsteps but we needed to be careful to ‘tread lightly’ to avoid collapsing the steps under us and going up to our waists!
From the top of the ice cliff we could see a few seals swimming below us as well as the sea kayaking team as they got close to us. Breaching Humpback whales set an amazing backdrop as we got to grips with being lowered down the cliff – the conditions of the cliff could hardly be called ice – more like melting ice cream!
Again, our guides were able to talk us through how to use our equipment in a way that allowed us to make efficient use of the slope and to get us safely back to the top.
Of course, being on the ocean meant that we also had to deal with rising tides. Our return to our zodiac pick up point saw us almost stepping back down into water where only 2 hours before there was a rocky beach. Back to Plancius again – this time in anticipation of a visit from Santa during the anticipated Christmas dinner!