Mike Horn a des problèmes en Arctique, Hugo Clément vole à son secours

Au péril de sa vie, Mike Horn tente de survivre à son expédition au pôle Nord. Face à cette situation urgente, le journaliste Hugo Clément va voler à son secours. 

Le sud-africain ainsi que son ami Børge Ousland ont entrepris un tour du globe en passant par les pôles, au sein d’un projet nommé "Pole2Pole".

Leur périple a commencé le 25 août 2019. Toutefois, même si Mike Horn a l’habitude de repousser les limites de l'extrême, le réchauffement climatique a eu raison de ses plans.

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Avec @clement_brelet, on est au Svalbard sur le Pangaea, le bateau de @mikehornexplorer avec son équipe et sa fille @jessicaahorn. Mike est actuellement avec son compagnon d’aventure @borgeousland, en difficulté sur la banquise proche du Pôle nord. Leur expédition devrait déjà être terminée, mais le changement climatique fragilise la glace et ralentit leur progression. Ils sont affaiblis, victimes de gelures, et il ne leur reste que 4 jours de vivres. Un navire brise glace tente en ce moment de les rejoindre mais la tâche est compliquée. Les températures descendent jusqu’à -40 et la nuit polaire rend la navigation périlleuse. Nous allons accompagner l’équipe de Mike, qui va essayer de faire route vers le nord pour le récupérer avec Børge, quand ils seront suffisamment descendus vers les eaux libres. Dernière option si le navire n’arrive pas à les atteindre : deux autres explorateurs à ski seront posés sur la banquise pour aller les ravitailler. On vous tient au courant. #SurLeFront

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URGENCE ABSOLUE

Sur son compte Instagram, le journaliste a détaillé la gravité de la situation en légende de sa publication.

“Avec @clement_brelet, on est au Svalbard sur le Pangaea, le bateau de @mikehornexplorer avec son équipe et sa fille @jessicaahorn. Mike est actuellement avec son compagnon d’aventure @borgeousland, en difficulté sur la banquise proche du Pôle Nord.

Leur expédition devrait déjà être terminée, mais le changement climatique fragilise la glace et ralentit leur progression. Ils sont affaiblis, victimes de gelures, et il ne leur reste que 4 jours de vivres.”

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Expedition Update 33: Last night was our coldest night so far. @BorgeOusland and I didn't manage to sleep much, the cold kept on waking us up. So we got up, out of the tent and started skiing at -40C in a beautiful clear night with the moonlight reflecting on the snow. This was the first clear night since we left the North Pole. Although the moonlight offered us a beautiful setting to walk in, today was another close-disaster day; but thanks to the good reflexes we have acquired over time, the situation turned out to be manageable. As we were walking Borge’s sled got caught up on some ice, so he started tugging at it to release it but the pressure of the tug caused the ice below him to give way. It was only at that moment that we realised we were walking over very thin snow-covered ice. Half of his body fell in this slush icy water, but he immediately rolled himself back and managed to get back on the more solid ice. He was wet from the waist-down on the outside of his clothing but luckily the moisture hadn’t made its way through the layers to the skin. As soon as he was out, he rolled himself in the snow to absorb a max amount of moisture. We call this method freeze drying: the moisture is absorbed and frozen by the dry snow, which can then be brushed off the exterior layer of our waterproof clothing. In these situations, the other person feels completely useless. There is nothing you can really do except assist with the detaching of the sled and potentially already setting up the tent urgently if clothing needs to be removed, changed and the body dried. We are slowly approaching the latitude of 85 degrees north on the Norwegian side, which for reminder is the same latitude where we got dropped off by Pangaea on the Alaskan side. But in the meantime we covered over 1000km of terrain passing by the North Pole. Our goal now is to power our way through to 84 or 83 degrees north with the remaining food we have, which slowly but surely starting to run out. But we are well prepared and have explored all possible alternatives, with just over 10 days of food left, it is finally time for us to go back home to our loved ones! #NorthPoleCrossing #Pole2Pole #MikeHorn

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UNE OPÉRATION PÉRILLEUSE

Hugo Clément a également souligné la perniciosité de l’opération de secours :

“Un navire brise-glace tente en ce moment de les rejoindre, mais la tâche est compliquée. Les températures descendent jusqu’à -40 et la nuit polaire rend la navigation périlleuse.

Nous allons accompagner l’équipe de Mike, qui va essayer de faire route vers le nord pour le récupérer avec Børge, quand ils seront suffisamment descendus vers les eaux libres. Dernière option si le navire n’arrive pas à les atteindre : deux autres explorateurs à skis seront posés sur la banquise pour aller les ravitailler.”

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Expedition Update 32: After fighting our way across this massive open water lead that has been haunting us for the past couple of days, we finally managed to make get to the other side. It is really tough when obstacles like these swallow up so much of our precious time. As the days go by, our food rations are decreasing and as it stands, at this progress rate we are not sure we will be able to reach the pickup point where Pangaea will be waiting for us at the latitude of approximately 82 degrees North. But we are also happy to know that soon this challenging expedition will be coming to an end and that although we were physically and mentally prepared, nature and the changes going on in the climate will always have the first word. In this photo, we can see @BorgeOusland eating breakfast. You will notice that he sleeps in a plastic bag, which we call vapor barrier liners. We use these to prevent the humidity of our bodies to travel into the sleeping back which would consequently cause the bag to freeze given the extreme cold temperatures. This isn’t optimal comfort, but after a while, you get used to it. The lack of sunlight is really starting to have an effect on our progression and our mindset. Although I have already travelled through constant darkness, I never realized as much as I do now, how essential light is for everything. The air is pure and clean up here, which is great for our physical health, but the lack of natural light is taking its toll on our mental health…It really is about finding that balance required to live a healthy and happy life. As humans we are designed to adapt and excel in different environments, but this doesn’t mean we are meant to survive in those environments. I love being in a situation where I can push my limits to come to these conclusions. It is only when you will be completely deprived from a fundamental human need, that you will understand the real worth of the gift that is life, and that the key to living it to the fullest usually lies in our very own hands. Still no sight of a single polar bear, Borge and I are really starting to wonder where they are all hiding?! #NorthPoleCrossing #Pole2Pole #MikeHorn

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Le jeune journaliste a terminé son message en promettant que l’opération de secours sera bientôt racontée sur France 2 dans l’émission “Sur le front”.

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Expedition Update 25: Sending photos and updates back home from the top of the world with @SpeedcastIntl and @CrosscallMobile. Only two men in the world are up here, slowly finding their way back south…we remind ourselves of this every morning when preparing to face the daily challenges that await us. Yesterday was a close disaster when @BorgeOusland nearly capsized in a big open water lead, during which we were unable to hear each other due to the strong winds. This situation, like many others, cause us to rethink our plan and learn from our mistakes; this is the only way to survive. Close-disaster aside, we made good progress on solid ice before having to stop due to a big open water lead, which we both chose to tackle the next morning. We are now passing the latitude of 89 degrees north as we slowly but surely make our way south. It feels good to know that we are on our way back home and not moving further from it, but closer to it. The drift is now pushing us towards Greenland, although we are headed for Spitzbergen, so we now have to walk southeast to compensate for the western drift. The body is slowly tiring and we cannot deny that it is getting increasingly difficult to wake up in the mornings and to pull our sleds throughout the days…but with a little discipline, we manage to stick closely and strictly to our routine. The bright side however, is now that we are accustomed to the harsh conditions, it has helped us find our little comfort zones. Appreciating the small things is very important in this environment, and we have well trained our eyes to see the positives while remaining realistic and focused on our goal. That goal lies at the centre of our attention and nothing can come in its way because it demands so much from us. This is what I love about survival, it is such a commendable mindset because it eliminates superficiality, allowing you to fully focus on what is ahead of us. By the way , and for your information, you will notice that most of our photos are taken in our tent because outside even with the flash, almost nothing can be seen due to the complete darkness. #NorthPoleCrossing #Pole2Pole #MikeHorn

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DES NOUVELLES DE SA FILLE JESSICA

À quelques jours du terme de son périple, l’aventurier est tombé dans de l’eau gelée. Résultats : les deux aventuriers sont actuellement dans un très grave état d’épuisement et souffrent de gelures. Mais dans cette situation critique, Mike Horn a pu recevoir des nouvelles de sa fille Jessica.

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#MikesDailyThoughts: It is safe to say, that at this stage of the expedition @BorgeOusland and I have both entered into survival mode. This got me thinking about survival and the strange behavioural pattern it triggers, which is something I realized we know and hear little about. I have observed that between Borge and I, conversations have decreased while actions have increased, which is a subconscious way for us to save all the energy we can. I have even noticed that the way we look at things has changed; we no longer admire the beauty around us, we only use our eyes to anticipate our next step and spot potential risks or threats. Here in the Arctic, we are connected to nature in way that I will never be back home. After spending 20 days in this harsh environment, I have grown sensitive to my surroundings to the point where I can now feel one degree drop in the temperature. I can also sense the speed of the wind, as well as its direction, with my eyes closed, just by the way it blows against me. I can predict the thickness of the ice by looking at it and by hearing the sound it makes when I ski over it. Here, in the Arctic, I have developed the instinct of an animal, whose one purpose is to survive. Throughout my years of exploration, my mental strength has overcome my physical strength to such an extent where I can now trust it without even having to question it. Without the power of the mind, I would have never achieved most of the things I have in my life – it is my secret tool, and the best part is that it can become yours too if it isn’t already!

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