24/08/2014

Interview exclusive du sportif belge du 21ème siècle, notre explorateur polaire Dixie Dansercoer! Félicitons-le pour son nouveau record du monde au Groenland!

 
Notre explorateur polaire belge Dixie Dansercoer n'est pas à son premier record du monde là-bas dans ces contrées où le froid extrême prédomine et en tuerait plus d'un! Il offre une nouvel fois à la Belgique un extraordinaire record du monde en région polaire, ici au Groenland sur sa calotte glaciaire où il effectua, durant ce printemps, son tour complet en kite et en ski; soit 4 044,9 kilomètres parcourus en 55 jours!
 
L'homme est super "cool", humble et vit pleinement sa passion. Bien qu'il ait déjà 52 ans, Dixie prépare chacune de ses expéditions avec la plus grande rigueur car il sait à quel point il devra vivre pendant des mois avec la douleur du froid, le manque d'hygiène, les faiblesses du corps, le matériel qui flanche, ...
 
Dixie Dansercoer est sans aucun doute un Athlète hors pair qui mérite aujourd'hui incontestablement les honneurs...celle de la Nation belge, nos "I Like et nos Partages". Bravooooo Dixie! Here we go Belgium!  

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Voici en exclusivité pour Ice and Green et Arctic05 son interview où il nous livre ses ressentis et ses souvenirs de sa dernière expédition en Arctique:   

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- What's the feeling to have achieved this wonderful world record, Dixie ? 
 
As it is with all groundbreaking exploits, they open the door for followers to do even better. We only open new doors for those who want to follow us in our quest to give it our very best and - why not - put Belgium on the forefront of Polar exploration, in order to keep our strong Polar tradition alive and kicking!                              
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- What's your best expedition souvenir ?
 
It was quite wonderful and extraordinary to start and arrive at the same location. This may sound trivial, but when you look at the enormous ice cap that Greenland is, and knowing that we managed to go all the way around it by using just the katabatic winds, I really do marvel at that. As it is with the other expeditions I have done in the past, it takes a couple of years before I fully realize what we were able to accomplish.
 
Also, ski-kiting throughout the night with the sun barely setting on the horizon, giving off tremendously beautiful shades of red, purple and yellow, are sights I will long remember.  

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- What was the highest temperature during your adventure ?
 
Plus 3,2 ° C 
 
- How's the thickness & shape of Greenland' inlandsis:  is it meelting so fast ? Should we start to be really concerned ? What can we do to avoid seing the Arctic pack-ice + Greenland' inlandsis melting so rapidly during summer time ?
 
As we are only tiny little specks on the Inlandsis and have operated away from the thinnest layer of ice at the edges of the ice cap, I cannot claim that we saw the effects of Global Warming or any other unusual signs of melting. When we ended the expedition at the beginning of June, it was still too early to see the effects of the summer melt that then actually is very visible. But the only way to showcase the trend of Polar Melting are the scientific measurements that go over long periods, year after year, and as we all know already, the rapid rise in temperatures is undeniable.  

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Those people who are still asking if Global Warming is really happening, are old school, they are past tense and are not willing to put in any effort to prevent any further rapid increase in temperatures.  Yes, there have been regular cyclic increases in temperatures over the course of our existence on Earth, but it has never gone so fast. Any living creature has the incredible capacity to adapt and we humans can do that even better with our intellect, but not at the lightning speed at which these changes are happpening!  

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- Do you recon, politicians (with the support of scientists & engineers) should start to envisage building up in the sky millions of mirrors above the Arctic pack-ice to avoid its melting (or other hi-tech solutions) ?
 
I do not think such hi-tech solutions are the one and only key to the problem. The most important change needs to come from our attitude and respect towards nature that is - and hardly anyone seems to realise this anymore - our prime and foremost source of survival.
 
Yes, I do agree that the biggest and most efficient decisions must come from politicians and business leaders who reach millions of people, but let's not forget the force of the masses. If all citizens of the world would suddenly agree to disagree, imagine what changes that could lead to!   

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- Did you encounter polar bears...?
 
No, again as we functioned on the Ice cap where no food is to be found for polar bears, they preferred to stay away from polar explorers who do not wash or bathe for months on end... Sourire
 
- If I say "51"...does it ring your bell, Dixie ?
 
Actually no, because I have already forgotten what that feels like as I have just turned 52!
 
And, that means that I am now fully integrated in Part Two of life and many more plans are brewing!  

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- So still fit & sharp, I see...was this expedition mentally/physically difficult Dixie...?
 
No, I cannot say that everything became more difficult because of my age. Maybe on the contrary, I can now place all difficult situations much better than when I was young. Acceptance and patience are the two biggest assets during a polar expedition. What I must admit is that the physical aches and pains that anyone experiences from any age do take a little longer to heal.  

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I am still running around with 'tingling' fingers in my left hand, the result of very long hours of pulling on the kite bar. With the winds pretty much coming from the same direction, i.e. from the right as we were on a clockwise itinerary and the katabatic winds coming down, the left arm was solicited twice as much as the left.  
 
With a continous tight grip on the steering bar and the cold temperatures preventing a smooth flow of the blood to the body's extremities, there must have been a serious blockage that can only heal slowly.  
 
 
- So, your next Arctic expe is planned in 2015 with Belgian Polar explorer Alain Hubert (left is Alain, right is Dixie)  ...tell us a bit more ?
 
Actually no, it will be for 2016 as Alain asked me to postpone for a year.
 
The aim and scientific research done on this expedition will be communicated in due time!  

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- Any special messages you wish to share with Arctic05 and Ice and Green' fans ?
 
This fall, Polar Circles is putting its guiding services at the disposal of anyone interested in the Polar Regions.
 
From info-evenings - the first one will be on 2 September 2014  in Gent - to training weekends in the Ardennes, all in function of the direct experience of a mini-expedition in Spitsbergen and from there on little by little towards the more ambitious expeditions, you can find all info on www.polarexperience.eu  

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14/06/2014

Fabuleux record du monde en Arctique par le belge Dixie Dansercoer! Félicitons-le...Come on Belgium!

La presse belge en parle tellement peu, mais saviez-vous que ce 4 juin 2014 et ce après une magnifique expédition arctique de 55 jours au nom de code "Greenland Ice Expedition", le si sympathique explorateur polaire belge Dixie Dansercoer (51 ans, à gauche de la photo) et son partenaire d'expédition, le canadien Eric McNair-Landry (30 ans, à droite de l'image) sont les premiers à avoir effectué en kite et en ski le tour complet de la calotte glaciaire du Groenland ! 4 044,9 kilomètres ont été parcourus!  

Bravooooo à Dixie et à Eric pour cet incroyable record du monde!

Partagez et surtout félicitez-les ci-dessous en "Commenatires" !

Retrouvez ici sur Arctic05 l'interview exclusive de Dixie Dansercoer avant son départ pour ce fabuleux record du monde au Groenland >>

greenland ice.jpg

05/04/2014

Here we go Belgium pour un record mondial en Arctique! Likez et Encouragez!

 
Soyez prêts à suivre durant ces mois d'avril, mai et juin 2014 le si sympathique explorateur polaire belge Dixie Dansercoer (photos ci-dessous) qui se lancera, avec son partenaire d'expédition Eric McNair-Landrypour un nouveau record du monde en Arctique, à savoir de parcourir sur la calotte glaciaire du Groenland plus de 5.000km en kite et en ski et ce en parfaite autonomie…  

dixie-4

Seulement cette année, la concurrence sera particulièrement rude vu la présence des vents glacés extrêmes de saison, des témpératures basses, des crevasses inattendues, des impacts du réchauffement climatique sur la calotte glaciaire groenlandaise…mais aussi, la présence de deux autres équipes qui relèveront à cette même période le même défi: une espagnole et l’autre, franco-allemande…Les paris sont donc lancés!
 
Dixie Dansercoer est un vrai "modèle sportif" tant pour les jeunes, que pour les managers...qui souhaitent savoir comment améliorer leur performance, leur concentration et acquérir des valeurs indispensables pour assurer du "bien être" au sein de l'équipe dont ils ont la charge. Nous sommes allés à sa rencontre pour une interview exclusive que vous trouverez ci-dessous!  
 
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- You and Eric Mc Nair-Landry will be starting in a few days a "sports expedition" on the Greenland ice-cap with your kites & skis, can you please explain us your goals?

We want to consider this expedition as the sequel to the Antarctic ICE expedition back in 2011-12 (www.antarcticice.be ) and so we have moved up from the Southern Hemisphere to the second largest icecap to be found on this planet, namely Greenland.  

  dixie dansercoer 5
 

- Did you prepare well your physical and mental training to be fit to confront the rough & cold Arctic winds ?

I keep my base fitness level in between expeditions, but in the last phase of physical preparation I am back at pulling tires through the fields of Huldenberg. In addition to that I have trained the specific, intrinsic muscle groups that I now know will be solicited much during an expedition like this. On a mental level, I realize that – once again - we will be faced again with the big unknown of the Eastern part of the ‘mini-continent’ of Greenland, but that keeps me on edge, alert and ready to be resilient. 

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- What's your age Dixie if we may ask ? How do you remain so fit & sharp? Do you see yourself still challenging the Poles at 65 years old ? Any secrets to share with us in terms of attitude, diet, philospohy ?

Ha, that’s a good one.  I remember when driving the zodiac and explaining to Queen Paola during a cruise in NE Greenland all of the little secrets of snow and ice, she suddenly asked me how old I was and when at the time I said that I was almost 50, she blurted out that I would be good for 10 more years of ‘service’. 

So I guess that another 8 years at this moment should not be a problem and we’ll take it from there!  I will certainly be guiding beyond that because I have only just started to structure well these activities.  Since that requires a solid organization, investment and long-term planning, it helps me keep myself fit for many more years to come. But I must admit that comes naturally, since it is more of a life’s vision and attitude.

  dixie dansercoer 2
 
At home we truly believe in a healthy diet and we can be called ‘flexitarians’, only eating meat when people offer it to us as a gesture of friendship and hospitality, something that cannot be refused. I also love sports and focus on running, which I have done ever since I was a kid. I still love windsurfing and have made the transition to kiteboarding as well.
 
Together with my wife Julie, we find much pleasure in a good game of tennis, and when I have time to spare I love long-distance race – or mountainbiking. We also believe that our generation – barring incidents or accidents – can easily live beyond 100 years on condition that we do not abuse our bodies….  

greenland-ice-exp-51

- Still, you must have weak points...how do you challenge them during an expedition ?
 
Oh, you know, I am just as cold as anyone else, but I believe I can now rely on all these years of experience and with age we can ‘place’ things better. Frame them.  So, even when I dip, I know I’ll crawl out of that short moment of weakness and that is perfectly fine.  But I know I may not lose the focus, and the weight of such expeditions really keeps you on your toes.  It is probably best that there are so many people you have to account to, because if I were just alone, doing my thing, I think I would let go easier and be less ambitious.
 
   dixie 5
 
- Where did you meet your expedition partner Eric ?  Did you train together ?  What did you already learn from him which may help you to achieve your mutual project with great success?
 
I met Eric in Cape Town before the start of the Antarctic Ice Expedition and I immediately liked him.  I pretty much have the same feeling as with Sam Deltour, who was also a solid guy on all levels.  So my gut feeling gives me full confidence, especially since he has such a great CV and he is also a super snowkiter, very important for this upcoming expedition. We will be seeing each other in Spitsbergen in March, when I also guide a group of 6 for a ‘mini-expedition’, which is part of my future focus on guiding. 
 
I am certain that Eric has full knowledge of the Ozone kites we will be using and since we only received the new quiver two weeks ago, we’ll have plenty of adaptations to do.  I will listen carefully to his advice!  And he is curious what I have to say about the mega-kites Sam an I used in Antarctica!  
 
 
dixie dansercoer 4
 
- Did you do some training at the Belgian coast, in Huldenberg woods or/& rather somewhere like Iceland? Any good spots you would recommand ?
 
As we are not in the best place for specific snow training in Belgium where we have only little snow in the winter, it is all about simulating. So, yes, I do go out in the fields around Huldenberg to pull tires. Additionally, I do go out to the ice & snow in Switzerland, Lapland or Spitsbergen for specific cold training. Embracing guiding people more also gives me the opportunity to not lose touch with the hard reality of the cold!  

greenland-ice-exp-3

- Give us please some insight on your next Arctic expedition  in 2015 with Alain Hubert (left in below picture, Dixie on the right)?
 
This is an expedition that will depart from the North Pole at the beginning of April and our azimuth will be the archipelago of Franz Jozef Land. Clearly, this is asking for trouble, as there is less and less ice as you approach this collection of island to the east of Spitsbergen.  We will drag kayaks behind us instead of sleds in order to cross extensive areas of open water. We have no solution as of yet to get away from there, but we are working on that. There is a lot of Russian red tape involved, but we have learned the tricks of the trade to deal with those situations as well!  
 
alain hubert & dixie dansercoer
 
- Where can all Arctic lovers follow you, Eric and your day by day adventure in Greenland ?
 
There will be a dedicated website www.greenlandice.be
 
We will, of course, give updates on Twitter and Facebook and Jullie will be writing the blogs & updates. 
 
  Capture d’écran 2014-03-22 à 11.52.43
 
- Any special message you would like to address to Arctic05/Ice and Green fans ?

Place your bets, because we have competition coming our way for the Greenland ICE expedition with a Spanish team and a French/German team going round as well!

 
dixie dansercoer 3
 

23/09/2013

Le magnifique film polaire belge "Beyond the Challenge"!


Le film documentaire "Beyond the Challenge" vient d'être lancé par l'explorateur polaire belge Dixie Dansercoer et Axa Belgique en vue de sensibiliser le public à la thématique du changement climatique. 

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Ce film polaire Beyond the Challenge raconte l’aventure exceptionnelle des explorateurs polaires belges Dixie Dansercoer et Sam Deltour, qui ont repoussé toutes les limites lors de l'Antarctic ICE, l’une des expéditions les plus extraordinaires jamais réalisées depuis la découverte du Pôle Sud.  
 
 

Je vous invite à relire les deux précédentes interviews exclusives réalisées avec nos deux explorateurs polaires Dixie Dansercoer et Sam Deltour=>


 

Plus d'info sur le film Beyond the Challenge en surfant sur www.beyondthechallengemovie.be