The Women's Euro-Arabian North Pole Expedition training in Iceland is now over. Everyone has gone their separate ways and enjoying the comforts of home after 5 hard days on an Icelandic Glacier. This is just the first step for the team on their journey to the North Pole next April but it has been a huge success. Not only is it a huge stride towards being a competent and confident team, it has also enabled us to form bonds as a group and become a very strong team.
Here is what some team members have said on social media about their experiences as they fly home and have time to reflect...
"It was our first night, very overwhelming, with a blizzard and very low visibility. I remember looking into the horizon and crying my eyes out, afraid of where I was... but as we got through and made peace with the cold.. it got better and better .. alhamdullila. At the end of the glacier, it's been 4 days of ups and downs. Learning how to live in the cold, melting snow for water, putting our tents up and taking them down. Skiing cross country for up to 7 hours a day navigating our way on the glacier with 11 incredible women, united to achieve an amazing goal. It's been one of the hardest things I've ever done however, now, it has made me see the #Northpole even clearer. Sunburned, tired, hungry, achy but it was 100% worth it!" (Asma from Qatar)
"We cross country skied for 6-7hrs a day taking turns guiding the team and acing our navigation skills. We went uphill and downhill and day and night. We slept in tents in -16 degrees. We heated ice to make drinking water. We learned how to set up and dismantle tents in super speed. And make ice walls for multiple purposes (like a bathroom). It was challenging. Physically and more so mentally. I broke down a few times in tears, I was overwhelmed by the entire experience but we all persevered. The next day was easier. Not only that but enjoyable! Wow, we are here! We're doing this. And look at that infinite white. I've never seen such a sight. We did it and we are going to do it again at the North Pole. I can't wait. I'm so grateful to share this experience with these profound ladies who I've grown to cherish this past week and lead by Felicity Aston, a person I truly admire. Even better in person. Just wow. All of it. Wow." (Mariam from Saudi Arabia)