Fri 06 Apr - Mon 16 Apr 2018

In aid of Borne

Borne

OVERVIEW

What to expect

ITINERARY

What you will do

COSTS

Ways to pay

INFORMATION

All you need to know

Your challenge day by day

Day 1, Fri 06 Apr 2018

International departure from London

There’s no turning back now as we meet the rest of our team at the airport for our adventure of a lifetime. After a last minute kit check, we will jump on board our flight to Norway and will stop off in either Tromso or Oslo, depending on our flight schedule. Overnight hotel/guesthouse.

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Day 2, Sat 07 Apr 2018

Arrive at Longyearbyen

After touching down in Norway, we transfer through to Longyearbyen on the Archipelago of Svalbard, a remote, yet modern village situated well above the Arctic Circle at 78 degrees north. Our guesthouse is conveniently located just outside the town centre and adjacent to our polar training area. This afternoon we’ll have time to sort all our equipment before a briefing and ski fitting ready for our challenge. Overnight hotel/guesthouse.

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Day 3, Sun 08 Apr 2018

Training, kit prep, briefings in Lonyearbyen

Today is spent in the wilderness for a short training trip. Here we perfect our skiing technique for the first time with pulks and kit. You will also practice setting up camp, cook and get used to the equipment, terrain and the cold. It’s then back to our guesthouse to prepare for the challenge ahead. Guesthouse overnight.

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Day 4, Mon 09 Apr 2018

Fly to Barneo Ice Camp

It’s an exciting day as we have our exhilarating flight to Barneo Ice Camp. The essential Barneo Ice Camp is located approximately 60 miles from the North Pole and is only set up for one month of the year (April) and this is when we have the very narrow window of opportunity to trek/ski to the Geographic North Pole. Despite many years of setting up and dismantling the Barneo Ice Camp, each year presents new challenges and so the camp operators absolutely reserve the right to make schedule and logistical changes at a moment’s notice, even when we are airborne and en route to or from the ice.  If we can’t fly today, we will stay another night in Longyearbyen.

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Day 5, Tue 10 Apr 2018

Fly to Barneo Ice Camp or begin challenge

If we’re not already there, we’ll fly to Barneo Ice Camp, preparing and loading our sledges onto the helicopter before being dropped off at the start point. We’ll set off north escorted by our head guide. Armed with the knowledge of the ice conditions, they will set the best route and tactics for us before we set up out first camp together in the frozen Arctic.

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Day 6, Wed 11 Apr 2018

Start sledge pulling and skiing North

Today our expedition really begins. The North Pole trek takes place in one of the last true wildernesses in the world. Temperatures can be as low as -45 degrees celsius.  Each day we’ll complete around eight hours of ice travel and three hours setting up camp. We typically walk for an hour, then rest to eat and drink, repeating this routine for up to eight hours a day. We will constantly check each other whenever we stop to make sure we keep warm and dry. Overnight camp on the ice.

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Day 7, Thu 12 Apr 2018

Continue sledge pulling and skiing North

The whole challenge takes place on the frozen ice on top of the Arctic Ocean. The ocean ice pack is moving and the ice can – and does – crack, causing open leads and pressure ridges. The terrain is tricky and we’ll be navigating our way around frozen and open leads, ice rubble, pressure ridges and across wonderful flat pans of Arctic ice. A typical day will begin with melting ice for hot drinks, porridge and thermos flasks, before preparing our sledges for the day. Overnight camp on the ice.

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Day 8, Fri 13 Apr 2018

Continue sledge pulling and skiing North

Each day our guide will select a suitable place to pitch our camp, we will take control, erecting and securing our tents, melting ice from our faces and then boiling snow/water for our delicious evening meal.  A moving ice pack has implications for journey times. If it moves in our favour (towards the North Pole), we will have to walk less distance to reach the Pole. If it moves against us, we can go to sleep and wake up to find ourselves with a few hours walk just to get back to where we were the night before. Overnight camp on the ice.

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Day 9, Sat 14 Apr 2018

Reach the North Pole!

On reaching the North Pole we will be exhausted and elated as we erect our tents and wait for the helicopter to pick us up, giving much needed time for our celebratory photos. If the weather is bad then we may need to spend the night camping at the ultimate sleepover destination – the North Pole – as we wait for the conditions to improve. Overnight camp on the ice or back at Barneo or even all the way back to Longyearbyen. 

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Day 10, Sun 15 Apr 2018

Back to Longyearbyen and a hotel bed

With a new album full of photos stored on our cameras, we return to Barneo Ice Camp and potentially take an immediate flight back to Longyearbyen. This will be weather dependent and subject to the schedule and logistical demands of the Antenov plane that will take us.  On the final evening of our trek we will enjoy a very special celebration dinner with the team and well-deserved night to thaw out at our hotel.

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Day 11, Mon 16 Apr 2018

Contingency day or fly to the UK

Hopefully today we will have completed our challenge and be back in Longyearbyen where we will enjoy a final team breakfast before saying goodbye to this phenomenal landscape and flying back to the UK.

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Important information

The Arctic Ocean is one of the most inhospitable regions on our planet. Logistics problems are enormous; the weather ferocious and unpredictable, ice condition is unstable. Distances are immense, facilities scarce. Safety and self-sufficiency are the paramount rules. We acknowledge and respect this. It is our obligation to warn to all clients that they like us and everyone else attempting to function in this extreme environment, are at the mercy of forces more powerful than any of us. Despite the expected period of calm dry weather, windstorms and blizzards as well as changes of the ice condition are a major threat to flights and groups en-route. Delays of days must be anticipated. Changes and amendments may apply to the programme, depending on the weather, ice or other conditions. It is important to consider possible delays or alterations, and accept them with patience. We will do our very best to keep to the general itinerary; however we cannot be held responsible for any last minute changes that might occur and we fully expect such changes to take place. In all such circumstances, your challenge leader will have the final say.

Please see this document for more information.

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ATOL protected

We hold an Air Travel Organiser's Licence granted by the Civil Aviation Authority. Our ATOL number is 6546. Many of the flight-inclusive challenges on this website are financially protected by the ATOL scheme. But ATOL protection does not apply to all holiday and travel services listed on this website. This ATOL protection only covers challenges that include flights booked by Charity Challenge and that originate in the UK. Please ask us to confirm what protection may apply to your booking. If you do not receive an ATOL Certificate then the booking will not be ATOL protected. If you do receive an ATOL Certificate but all the parts of your trip are not listed on it, those parts will not be ATOL protected. Please see our booking conditions for information or for more information about financial protection and the ATOL Certificate go to: www.atol.org.uk/ATOLcertificate

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