A 7 day full on Arctic Expedition in remote, unspoilt high arctic environment. This is Polar Bear territory.
No previous skiing or winter camping experience required; simply a superb experience.
Dates available for both May 2017 and May 2018.
Fly into the most northerly settlement in the world (78 degrees North) and immerse yourself in a remote, high arctic environment on this full on wilderness skiing expedition; this is Polar Bear territory. Whilst it is not essential to have previous cross country skiing and winter camping experience, it would be an advantage.
Our Norway 78 Deg North Arctic Challenge starts in Longbearbyen (Spitzbergen), from where a fast boat takes you across the Fjord to your starting point on the sea ice. From here, the expedition is on its own, venturing into the unspolit wilderness.
The expedition will work its way over the pristine white glacial terrain assisted by your 2 Alaskan Huskies, there to assist with pulling some supplies. The initial objective is to get up onto the plateau and explore the region from there. You will be taught how to build a good, well functioning base camp using the superb equipment supplied. This is real freedom, no fixed timings during this flexible phase, which maybe dictated by the weather.
There is plenty of wildlife to keep your eyes open for, including Ringed and Beared Seals and Polar Bears – yes, Polar Bears.
At this time of year, it’s the land of the midnight sun; no full darkness! This sheer white, frozen landscape is spectacular and unspoilt.
The expedition continues over the Nanyen Pass and eventually down to the sea again for pick up by boat and back to Longbearbyen.
This expedition is for any aspiring adventurer, looking for something different, something spectacular and yet without the full skills of a cross country skier or winter camper. It’s a serious trip with resilience and flexibility and professional Guides to keep you on the right track.
No previous cross country skiing or winter camping experience is required but it will be an advantage.
Day 1, Depart UK, Arrive Oslo (overnight transit)
Fly from London direct to Oslo for an overnight transit stop (airport hotel), en route to Longbearbyen.
Day 2, Depart Oslo, Arrive Longyearbyen
Fly from Oslo direct to Longbearbyen and transfer to the Guesthouse. Your Guide will meet you there. You will stay for 2 nights here. Dinner this evening is the official first gathering of the group. The Guide will go through the program for the trip and the skiing route. Your guide will also go through your personal outdoor equipment with you to make sure you have everything you need for the trip and that the equipment meets the standards that the Arctic environment requires. BD
Day 3, Full and Final Preparations
Today is dedicated to making final preparations and the packing of all of the equipment. It is essential that all team members know what equipment is with them. You will be teamed up with 1 or 2 other expedition members with whom you will work together and share a tent on the trip. Training will be given on the tents and other equipment being used. There will be time to make your final personal preparations and adjustments. Your guide will go through safety routines, skiing routines and how to handle the dogs in the best way possible. There will be some spare time for any last minute shopping and look around the town. B
Day 4, Fast Boat to start point, Start skiing
After breakfast and an introduction to our four-legged friends who will accompany us on the trip, it’s onto the fast open boat across the Isfjorden towards Ymerbukten. This scenic fjord on the northern side of the great Isfjorden is our gateway into the real Arctic wilderness. When we arrive in the Ymerbukten fjord, the boatman will put us safely onto the sea ice in front of the glacier. From here we will work our way towards land and up onto the glacier. On the way up the glacier, the dogs will help us pull some of the equipment; they love it! This evening will be the first night in tents. BLD
Day 5, Expedition
Wake to a stunning white wilderness view from the glacier over Ymerbukta and the surrounding mountains. Most of the day is an easy uphill, until we reach the plateau at about 500 meters above sea level. BLD
Days 6 – 8, Expedition – 3 Full Days on the Glacier Plateau
We will make our way across this vast and flat glacier landscape. Up here, the winter is still strong, we can get hard winds and low temperatures, or we can get fabulous mild and sunny days. No matter what kind of weather, this great landscape will give us a real taste of how big and impressive Arctic nature can be. We hope to spend 2 nights in the same camp. This will give us the opportunity to do a daytrip without the pulks. Depending on the weather, skiing conditions and the group, we have several different possibilities for daytrips – getting high onto a mountain top or swooping down into the St. Jons fjorde to explore the sea ice and the wildlife associated with it. BLD
Day 9, Expedition – The Nansen Pass and Bore Glacier
Today we start the descent off of the glacier and camp close to the Nansen pass, the mountain pass that separates the Nansen glacier and the Bore glacier. When we are down from the pass we come out onto the mighty Bore glacier where we once again get the spectacular view over Isfjorden and we can even spot the mountains around Longyearbyen 50km away. We make our last camp above the glacier front. BLD
Day 10, Expedition – Last Day on ice, Fast Boat back to Longyearbyen
Last day on the ice. We pack up our camp as usual and start our way down the glacier front, through the moraine landscapes and onto the sea ice of Borebukta. Around lunch time the boat will be back to pick us up and we travel back to Longyearbyen. After arriving at the port we will all be transported back to the guest house for a hot shower and a good dinner. BLD
Day 11, Depart, fly to Oslo
Breakfast and depart for Oslo, overnight airport hotel.
Due to the nature of this trip, we cannot guarantee that it will return to Longyearbyen on schedule. We therefore recommend you add at least 1 night onto the end of your trip.
Day 12, Depart Oslo, Arrive London