A ski expedition to the top of the world
A scientific exploration of Arctic Ocean sea ice - Before It's Gone
The Arctic Ocean has always been a problem for explorers. The story of humans reaching the North Pole is littered with disaster and tragedy. Yet, there is something about this landscape of constant change – not solid ground but a vast raft of unstable ice – that continually draws to it the curious and the adventurous.
The cold is just the beginning.
The team will travel by ski, pulling sledges containing all the food, fuel and equipment they will need and will camp on the sea ice each evening.
Not only will the team need to contend with temperatures that can be as low as ‑40C (likely more than twice as cold as the inside of your home freezer) and the possibility of encountering polar bears, but also the terrain which is extremely challenging.
The sea ice the team will travel over is constantly moving, making navigation difficult. In places, the movement of the ice creates bands of ice rubble – called pressure ridges – that must be traversed, or cracks the ice apart to reveal open water.
We are very pleased to be able to support this fascinating and vital exploration into the impact of global warming and the melting polar ice caps.
We must all play our part in combating the causes of climate change and we are delighted to help this brave and passionate, all female team in their extraordinary endeavours.
It is a swift but intense expedition.
It is the intention of the expedition team to fly from Longyearbyen, capital of Svalbard (which is governed by Norway) early in April 2023 to Barneo, a floating base camp located on the Arctic Ocean sea ice. From Barneo, they will be flown by helicopter to a latitude of 89N where they will begin their ski journey of approximately 110km to the Geographic North Pole at 90N – the top of the world – in less than 10 days.
At AST, we are proud to be supporting the Before Its Gone expedition. We understand the pressing importance of the scientific work being undertaken by the group and the need to highlight this to the world. By providing reliable satellite hardware and connectivity, we hope to not only provide the group with a means of reliable communication to keep them safe but also provide them with the opportunity to allow others to follow their journey and amplify the fantastic work they are doing.