South Georgia - Ski Traverse 2013

by Oceanwide Expeditions News 02.10.2012

Are you tough enough? Sign up now to become an expedition member on our ski trek across South Georgia retracing sections of the historic Shackleton route.

In 2010 the first international team of six participants and two mountain guides successfully completed their self supplied ski crossing of South Georgia following the historical footsteps of Shackleton, Crean and Worsley along the route across the glaciated interior of the remote South Georgia island from King Haakon Bay to Stromness. The ski team accomplished the traverse in 4 days, 3 nights with field camps at Murray Snowfield, Great Nunatak and Fortuna west side. The expedition hauled sledges and used skis for the entire way. The 2011 expedition had to struggle against vicious weather conditions, but a small team of skiers accomplished their goal against the odds.

OTL28, Exclusive South Georgia, 20 March - 06 April 2013 (18 days), Ushuaia - Montevideo:

This is an expedition for real explorers! Apply to become a member of an expedition team of up to 12 ski explorers guided by polar guides and attempt to traverse the island of South Georgia on a self supplied ski trek hauling pulkas (sledges) with personal and shared equipment (food, stoves, fuel) across mountainous terrain from the South coast (King Haakon Bay) to the North coast (Stromness Bay) in a minimum of  4 days. The skiers will cover a total distance of 40 – 50 km retracing sections of the historic Shackleton route from 1916. The expedition will be guided by famous polar explorer, Børge Ousland, from Norway. 

Expedition leader: Børge Ousland, explorer, photographer, author and speaker

With solo expeditions to both the South and North Poles and solo crossings of both the Antarctic and the Arctic from coasts to coasts, Børge Ousland has firmly established himself as the leading polar explorer of our time. Last year Børge and skipper Thorleif Thorleifsson in the “Northern Passage”, a 31 foot sailing trimaran made of fibreglass with a ten horse power outboard as only engine, became the first ever to circumnavigate the North Pole in one season. This is now possible due to the fast retreat of the Arctic sea ice. This expedition presents a definite proof of what is happening in the Arctic due to climate changes, and the threats and possibilities this opens for. Børge has managed to successfully complete his expeditions, including some spectacular glacier crossing and mountain climbing, as a result of thorough preparation with emphasis on training, coordination and development of equipment and properly balanced nutrition. While planning new outings to remote places, Børge Ousland makes his living giving lectures, writing books (9 so far) and contributing to films from the wilderness. He is one of the few speakers represented by National Geographic Speakers Bureau; a part of the National Geographic Society, Washington, D.C.

The ski traverse involves elements of ski mountaineering, glacier travel and winter camping. In general, participants must be physically conditioned and experienced in order to participate in strenuous exercise in alpine environments with sometime extreme weather. In addition, ski trekkers must be familiar with skiing and crevasse rescue techniques that can be learned in Alpine Introductory Courses. The ski team will aim for reunion with the ship at Stromness Bay to rejoin the rest of the ship’s passengers and enjoy the latter part of the South Georgia cruise itinerary.

The voyage is an exciting expedition not only for the tough adventurer. The voyage is also available for non skiers who want to book „cruise only“ (with landings, hikes and zodiac excursions). The sea explorers (cruise only) will explore the Northern shorelines of the Island, while at the same time the ski explorers will attempt to traverse the Island.

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