Into the Cold: A Journey of the Soul

Synopsis: Into The Cold--A Journey of the Soul retraces the personal and harrowing expedition of two men on foot to the North Pole in sub-zero temperatures to commemorate the centennial of Admiral Peary's reach in 1909. It is a journey of endurance and commitment into the depth of the soul against the backdrop of the magnificent, unforgiving and rapidly vanishing Great North.
Director(s): Sebastian Copeland
Production: Sebastian Copeland Productions
 
IMDB:
6.7
Year:
2010
85 min
Website
20 Views


l guess its T minus twelve hours

now, just about.

We're going to preload the plane

and at 7:
00 am tomorrow,..

...if weather is good,

we'll take off for the ice.

l think we're ready.

lt is difficult to pin point

the beginning of this journey.

Was it the childhood dream

to follow in the steps of...

...the supermen who chartered

the maps of our world...

...with their bravery, instinct and

natural connection with the land?

Was it the day the thought

entered my mind...

...that to make the poles could

in fact be within my reach?

Was it a year ago when l began

articulating the thought,..

...first mentally, then vocally,

that l would undertake...

...the Everest of polar expeditions,

perhaps the toughest on Earth?

Was it six months ago when l stepped

up both my training and diet...

...to increase strength and mass

so that l could endure...

...the brutal cold

and harsh conditions...

...of six to eighth weeks

on the ice?

Was it when, lo and behold,

amidst a failing economy...

...minimal funding came

through to green light...

...to my two-member Centennial

expedition to the North Pole...

...to commemorate Peary"s first

successful reach 1909?

Or is it just now, as l sit in the

middle row of a fully booked...

...flight to Minnesota to undergo

a week of "shakedown" training...

...to test the equipment,

the systems and our capabilities?

Conditions here can simulate

the arctic environment.

And spending a week on a

frozen lake, sleeping in snow,..

...and dropping into a hole

in the ice for survival tests...

...can wake you to

the realities ahead.

We were leading by example into

a wilderness that is endangered.

One which is suffering greatly,

at the hands of climate change.

We had a shortage of food,

basically.

We face really, really tough

traveling conditions.

Those decisions we made in a tent

hindered us from peak performance.

-We had very reduced visibility...

-l was physically exhausted.

...because l virtually could

hardly see a damn thing.

Rescue is uncertain.

North Pole is a very,

very difficult experience.

And travelling to there is

the hardest trip in the world.

The ice just simply opened up from

under me and swallowed me.

l got the exploring bug from my

Grandfather who conducted safaris...

...in lndia and Africa

in the 1940s and 50s.

By mid life he traded

his gun for a camera.

My earliest memories of photographs

date from childhood...

...and viewing black and whites

of his lions and elephants.

l shot my first pictures of wildlife

in Africa when l was 12.

From that time on, photography

has been my weapon.

With images my mission"d be to help

people fall in love with their world.

Because l feel that we will not

save what we do not love.

My first trips to Antarctica

were game changers...

...and such rich experiences.

lt is also a system that is

challenged by climate change.

l first went there in 2006 with

my friend John Quigley...

...to send an SOS from a remote

iceberg in the Gerlach Strait.

That trip consolidated

my love for the ice,..

...and from it l brought back

impressions that changed my life.

l had dreamt of reaching the

North Pole since l was a child.

Today that environment,

ground zero for climate change,..

...is melting away

at confounding rates.

And my childhood dream

will no longer...

...be afforded to the children

of future generations.

Part of my mission is to commemorate

the remarkable feat of...

...Admiral Peary, Henson, and his

team of lnuit who set off on foot...

...and reached the North Pole,

100 years ago, on April 6th, 1909.

But it is also to raise

awareness on the fact...

...that there"ll be no bicentennial

expedition on foot to the North Pole.

The Arctic Sea cap is melting away

so rapidly that it will be gone...

...in the summer months--

within just a few years.

lt is hard to imagine the

North Pole without ice,..

...but that is the impending

reality that we will face.

This should send a clarion to the

world and raise a significant...

...call onto our responsibility

to develop sustainably.

l do not know what Duluth, Ml looks

like any other time of the year.

But in early February it does not

figure on many top 10 destinations.

Short of dogsled training and

Outward Bound programs.

The approach by plane spelled out

the grim and frigid environment.

What kind of individual

volunteers to fly...

...from sunny California to this

outpost near the Canadian border?

On the taxi drive from the

airport to the motel...

...my driver susses me out by

assessing the slew of...

...sponsor badges that

adorn my expedition jacket...

...and concludes accurately that

l am not from these parts.

l share the purpose of my trip, and

he tells me that two months ago...

...he saw the coldest temperatures

ever recorded here:

45C.

45C?

Minnesota, it turns out, can produce

conditions that approximate...

...the Arctic environment.

The "Land of 10,000 Lakes" is...

...ideally suited to train in

continental US for polar expeditions.

Balmy day in the Arctic.

This will be a joke

compared to where we're going.

After careful consideration,

l will lead my own team.

Keith will be with me

and l feel good about that.

We're out camping.

Four inches of snow.

l met Keith in training...

...and we share a passion

for Polar exploration.

He is an expert outdoorsman,..

...and l"m confident that

his skills will complement mine.

For someone like myself, who is

enamored by polar travel and...

...polar history, the opportunity

to get out there and experience...

...the environment that those

explorer are travelling in...

...was the highlight for

my young adventuring career.

Keith and l are the only ones here

to plan for the five to six weeks...

...needed to cover over

the 300 nautical miles,..

...or the last five degrees North.

ln the years since Peary,

less than 150 people...

...have traveled that

distance on foot.

Within the next few years, no one

will likely be able to travel...

...that distance any longer...

...unless they"re willing to

travel partly by night.

For the ice will get too thin and

fragmented during the spring days.

Up early to feed the kennel

of sled dogs...

...we find unusually mild

temperatures and rain.

Breakfast of champions, yes.

Five class accommodations.

Courtesy of Mr Rick Sweitzer.

Rick, the owner of Polar Explorers

later tells me that the shakedown...

...is designed to dissuade all but

the most committed adventurers.

ln a flat, matter of fact tone,

he announces that...

...the week had been designed to

"shakedown" the less than super fit.

lt's really beautiful around here.

Conditions are a lot milder than

they will be in the Arctic.

As far as the effort of pulling the

sled, it's a little harder here.

The snow is sticking to the sled;

it makes it a bit heavier.

lt's about 300 pounds

as it is, this one here.

And that'll be my lifeline

for about six weeks.

All these lakes in Minnesota'd be

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Sebastian Copeland

Sebastian Copeland (born 3 April 1964) is an award-winning photographer, polar explorer, author, lecturer, and environmental activist. He has led numerous expeditions in the polar regions to photograph and film endangered environments. In 2017, Copeland was named one of the world's top 25 adventurers of the last 25 years by Men's Journal. He is a fellow of The Explorers Club. His documentary Into the Cold was a featured selection at the 2010 Tribeca Film Festival and was released on DVD timed to Earth Day 2011. He is a public speaker and polar consultant. He has addressed audiences at the United Nations, The World Affairs Council, The George Eastman House, and Fortune 500 companies such as Hewlett Packard, Google, and Apple Inc., as well as colleges and museums. He is actor Orlando Bloom's cousin. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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