The Expedition will take place in northern Norway, within the Arctic Circle at 70 degrees North, in July/August 2013. Exact dates will be confirmed when flights are booked early 2013. Weather conditions are likely to be mixed with midday temperatures at base camp around 10 degrees and night time temperatures on the ice-caps dropping below freezing. Our flights from London Gatwick will fly to Alta; the gateway to Norway’s Arctic fjordlands, and, as the area experiences 24hr daylight in the summer, you will experience the bright blue and orange midnight sky. In your Fire Groups (a Fire is a traditional term for a small group of around 10-12 people, originating from a group sat around a camp fire) you will head to base camp where you’ll be trained in Arctic and glacier travel, mountaineering skills, radio communications, first aid and safety procedures. Meals will consist of expedition ration packs, with a few treats! A full itinerary will be available shortly before the expedition.
Every fire will have a specific fieldwork objective. Previous British Exploring fieldwork in this region has included glaciology, geology photography, wildlife and plant surveys and environmental engineering projects. There is likely to be a healthy emphasis on studying global warming and climate change. Fieldwork projects will be developed through the year running up to the expedition and explained fully at the Explorers’ Briefing Weekend. Our aim is that expedition fieldwork will provide Explorers with first-hand experience of fieldwork collection techniques. All Explorers will be briefed on wildlife that could be encountered. This may range from whales, dolphins and sea birds in the fjords, to reindeer, otter and eagles on land.
Mountaineering possibilities are extensive and many days on the glacial ice-caps are planned throughout the expedition. Mountaineering in the arctic is a unique challenge. Summit vistas are stunning, with views of a truly awe inspiring landscape. Much time will be spent travelling in rope teams on the glaciers and ice-caps spending several nights camping on the ice and pulling your kit in pulks (small sledges). Teams will navigate through crevassed areas and have the opportunity of climbing some of the impressive peaks and ridges.
Learning to live and operate in an arctic wilderness will bring you far away from the comforts of home, but you will develop a keen sense of self-reliance. British Exploring’s primary objective is personal development, and you will be encouraged to consider your learning throughout the expedition, especially in your communication, team skills and leadership skills, and development of your confidence and personal values.
Health and Fitness
The terrain can be challenging with rough scree and boulder fields to contend with before reaching the foot of the glaciers which will be undergoing snow melt. Crevasses, melt water channels and sections of “blue ice “will be encountered, so Explorers will be walking with crampons and ice axes in roped teams. Explorers do need to be healthy and reasonably fit, and sufficiently robust to be able to play their full part in long trek days and load carrying (within their capabilities).
Fundraising & Bursaries
We strongly feel that lack of funds should not deter enthusiastic people from applying to join us on Expedition, and we are committed to offer fundraising and bursary support wherever we can.
We recognise fundraising as a fantastic opportunity for the development of our Explorers and will offer you guidance, tips and ideas. Your fundraising experiences may include:
-Trust & Charity Applications
-Publicity / Media Contact
Please see our Fundraising page for more tips with your fundraising.
There will be an opportunity for those who are struggling to raise the funds for expedition to apply for a number of bursaries in the Spring before your expedition departs.
Bursary applications are now open until the MIDDAY 30th April 2013. For more information please see our bursary page.
After your Expedition
Your expedition team will be reunited again once you return!
In the following October after your expedition, British Exploring organises a ‘Next Steps’ weekend to help you digest exactly what you achieved on your expedition. You will then meet again in January 2014 for the British Exploring Annual Gathering and presentations of the 2013 Expeditions which is followed by the Explorers Ball. After that it is hoped that you will stay involved as members of the Society and we are sure you will plan many reunions yourselves in the months and years ahead!
Please remember that as with any expedition plans are subject to change, we will try to keep all applicants updated as best as we can.