Spencer Smirl is the Ice Team’s lead mechanic (and a proud Canadian). He will be flying out to Cape Town later this month:

“Enjoyed an interesting day of medical examinations on Tuesday in London. We spent the day participating in a variety of tests to provide a base measurement for the human studies we will be completing in Antarctica. The eye tests were the most interesting. We had very detailed images of all the different parts of our eyes recorded. It was quite surreal to see the nerves in the back of our eyes and also learning how to use the equipment to examine each other’s eyes once in Antarctica.

Tonight I have the Finning Christmas party. Very excited. I have attended a Finning Christmas party every year since 2003. With the Ice Team staying behind for training in the UK while the ship left for Cape Town, I am able to carry on the tradition. It has been nice to remain in the UK for the Christmas season instead of sailing south on the SA Agulhas. The rest as well as the extra last minute training has been a good way to ease the nerves after a frantic 2 weeks of finishing the Cat D6Ns and loading the ship. All the media involvement overlapping long hours of work during those two weeks were very climactic. I eagerly await the next peak in excitement as we approach the Antarctic Continent and then carry out the daunting task of unloading the ship on the ice.”