And that’s just the FaceBook page for the MainstreamLastFirst expedition.
I’ve updated the chart and the screen shot, even though the crew is still tied down on the north short of the Dease Strait and unable to move due to heavy winds. But I confess to being disappointed by the behavior, evidently approved by the management, of commenters at the MLF page.
First of all, it’s now been a couple of days, and there is still no link to the Irish Times article in which the crew announced to the world (but not their own Internet followers!) that they were giving up. I don’t blame the crew for not proceeding further: conditions really are bad and getting worse, and ice has apparently blocked their path to Pond Inlet already. I think the “four more weeks of melt season” is not happening this year.
Did the crew really withhold this information intentionally from their followers? I suspect not. A rather rabid MLF poster has mentioned it (with no link still), but I think that the original blog entry was simply omitted by their ground crew person in Vancouver. This is speculation on my part, and it strikes me as odd that their new blog post today still contains no mention of planning to give up. (There is some interesting photography in it, though.)
The Captain of the Grey Goose, which does Arctic expeditions, excoriates the crew for various reasons. I don’t feel so harshly about them; I think they made their best guess and built to suit, and the guess was wrong. So far, it seems that they will get out of this alive — I certainly hope so. And I recognize and appreciate their monumental effort getting as far as they did. It’s not clear that they’ve intentionally withheld info about their decision to quit, since all of their text goes through Vancouver before posting.
It’s the poor FaceBook page that saddens me most. They have one furious poster that hunts down any new arrivals to see if he can find “dirt” on them — which in his mind means that they are not True Believers in Global Warming. No matter how benign their post on the MLF page, he swarms to the attack. Consider this exchange:
So far as I know, this was the first and only comment by Morry Weiskop at the time that Lawrence Martin attacked. Later discussion showed that Morry Weiskop was correct, and a detailed closeup of the ice in Dease Strait was posted showing the Arctic Joule amongst greens of ice in the water (I added the position marker and name just now):
To this, Lawrence Martin simply called him a denier troll again, “taking his orders from Troll Central.” Amazing. And it does no service to the Arctic Joule crew to have this fellow as their most-visible representative.
===|==============/ Keith DeHavelle