The Sledge Patrol
It's good to see that Sandra Skibstad is making good progress on her film about the Sledge Patrol -- called APUN. She is currently working on the script, and has a busy Facebook page.
I also discovered an interesting article about the events of 1942-43, when "The Greenland War" was in full swing. Archaeologists Jens Fog Jensen and Tilo Krause have been investigating some of the key sites involved in the conflict:
Wehrmacht occupations in the new world: archaeological and historical investigations in Northeast Greenland
by Jens Fog Jensen and Tilo Krause
Polar Record 48 (246): 269–279 (2012).
ABSTRACT. As the axis powers were denied access to data from international weather stations under allied control, soon after the outbreak of World War II Germany had to establish her own network of manned and automatic weather stations throughout the north Atlantic. These operations were primarily run by the Kriegsmarine and the Luftwaffe. In Greenland, several manned weather stations were established by the former. The two most successful of those were Holzauge and Bassgeiger in Northeast Greenland, each in operation for almost an entire year in 1942–1943 and 1943–1944 respectively. The allied forces, in return, had established the North-East Greenland Sledge Patrol in 1941, in order to defend the Northeast Greenland coast against German activities. In 2007 and 2008, archaeologists and historians from the National Museum of Denmark investigated the remains of the allied station at Eskimonæs on Clavering Ø (Clavering Island) and the German station Holzauge at Hansa Bugt on Sabine Ø (Sabine Island).
In the article, there is a very interesting re-telling of some of the key episodes in the drama.
Acts of God -
I am of course sworn to secrecy as to the contents of the story, but here is a publicity synopsis, just to give a feeling for it:
This is a fast-moving conspiracy thriller in the tradition of Dan Brown, Alistair MacLean, Clive Cussler and Hammond Innes, set in a magnificent yet deadly polar environment. It is also an inspiring story of comradeship and survival against overwhelming odds. At the height of the Cold War in 1962, eight young men arrive in the Arctic wilderness of East Greenland, on an expedition from Oxford University. The party is led by Stephen Hanna, just 22 years old. The explorers expect to enjoy the adventure of a lifetime, and to undertake scientific work in the most spectacular fjord landscape on earth. But as soon as they arrive, things start to go wrong, and following a series of close encounters with death they realize that their misfortunes are not occurring purely by chance. The explorers are too inquisitive and too intelligent for their own good, and after some weeks in the field they realize that they know too much, and that they are being hunted down by an invisible and implacable enemy. Prematurely their research plans have to be abandoned, and their adventure turns into a fight for survival. As the death toll mounts, the people of a small Inuit settlement are also caught up in a conflict which they want nothing to do with. At last the explorers get angry, and although they have no weapons and no means of transport, they are fit and they know how to survive in the Arctic. Their only option is to go onto the offensive, in the full knowledge that they will probably not come out of the conflict alive.
The other thing I have done, to enhance the reading pleasure of those who might be interested in a story of this type, set in the real world, is to put together a rather splendid collection of images from the key locations -- Kjove Land, Syd Kap, Bear Islands, Schuchert Dal, Stauning Alps, Nordvest Fjord, Jameson Land etc. The pictures can be seen here:
Above -- one of the images used in the early promotion of the new novel.
Satellite image with some of the key locations in the story