Rugged Toughpad Tablet Powers 56-Day Arctic Expedition

When Dixie Dansercoer and Eric McNair-Landry met during a 2011 vacation to Cape Town, South Africa, they formed an instant bond.  Not only were they both passionate about kite-skiing, but they had also both recently completed Antarctic kite-skiing expeditions with their respective colleagues, covering nearly 5,400 miles between the two teams. When Dixie’s partner, Sam Deltour, decided to continue his medical studies instead of pursuing an expedition to Greenland, Eric was his next phone call.

Navigating the Arctic for nearly three months is not an endeavor to take lightly. The amount of preparation required – such as equipment, insurance and mapping – could take longer than the trip itself. But these two were far from rookies. Dixie’s Arctic and Antarctic accomplishments date back to 1995, when his team completed a 400-plus mile Trans-Greenland trek in just three weeks; Eric has traveled almost 10,000 miles via kite-ski, and holds the world record for the longest distance kite-skied in 24 hours (369.72 miles).

Dixie and Eric would attempt a new record in Greenland: surpassing the standing Arctic distance world record of 3,120 kilometers (1,938 miles), set by adventurer Adrian Hayes in 2009.


On April 7, 2014, Dixie and Eric, along with a crew of scientists, were dropped by helicopter onto the Greenspeed Ridge ice cap on the southeast coast of Greenland. From there, they would circumnavigate the island counterclockwise, covering more than 3,100 miles over the course of 80 days. In addition to pursuing a new world record, Dixie, Eric and crew sought to collect much-needed scientific data for global climate experts to help them further understand global warming and insight into how it can be countered.

Key for the expedition: gear that could withstand the icy conditions and sub-zero temperatures. The team sought tools that would thrive in the harsh conditions. For computing, they chose the Toughpad FZ-M1—the perfect mobility solution for their mission. Lightweight, durable and accessible even with gloves on, the Toughpad connected to the expedition’s satellite phone, and synced with their cameras, all through Windows 8.1.

Despite a number of challenges, on Day 47, Eric and Dixie hit the 3,166.4 km (1,968 miles) mark, successfully breaking the standing record by Adrian Hayes and setting their own. The team celebrated heartily but briefly – food was running out!

On Day 56, June 4, 2014, in the early morning, the expedition arrived at their final destination: Greenspeed Ridge, where they embarked nearly three months earlier. Dixie, Eric and team had successfully circumnavigated the Greenland ice cap. One day later, they were picked up from the ridge, with hot meals and cold beers awaiting them: Mission accomplished.

Visit the Greenland ICE Expedition online to learn more about Dixie and Eric’s journey. See what they had to say about the Toughpad FZ-M1 below.


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