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Archive for the ‘Arctic’ category

SAFARI IN THE POLAR DESERT

November 10th, 2015

Close encounter with a bowhead whale at Nunavut Arctic CanadaBowhead Whale Nunavut Arctic CanadaI am wearing three pairs of socks, two thermals, three shirts, a sweater and an expedition jacket, but I am still freezing. The arctic wind slashes against my face as we ride east on qamutiks, or komatiks, authentic Inuit wooden sledges pulled by snow scooters, to base camp. For five hours our small group swishes over the frozen ice of Eclipse Sound and along the shores of the majestic Sirmilik National Park, part of Baffin Island. I am burring my head deep into the warmth of my fluffy but colossal parka, hiding from the icy wind. (more…)

A DATE WITH A HUSKY

February 10th, 2013

dog sledding in Laplanddog sledding in Lapland Our expedition leader Johan Väisänen has the looks of a Viking with the vigour of Ben Hur. The latter also refers to the sled on which he skilfully balances while zipping through a cold and silent, white landscape. Johan is a modern charioteer, with the only difference that the carriage is a wooden sleigh pulled forward by six hyperkinetic husky dogs. (more…)

FOLLOW THE COMPASS NORTH

January 23rd, 2011

SpitsbergenSpitsbergenBarely eighty years ago Spitsbergen was the Arctic end of Europe where only the polar bear reigned supreme. A century later, he shares his icy empire with a town of seasoned Norwegians and the rare tourist who ventures this far north. The Svalbard archipelago, of which the largest island is Spitsbergen, lies midway between Norway and the North Pole. Any traveller looking for Arctic sensations will easily find them here (just one comfortable SAS flight away from Oslo or Tromsø). Everyone reaches 74° north, but you have to be a bit more intrepid to reach 81° latitude. (more…)

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