Preparation is everything. For many it is more than half the journey. Therefore, we have meetings before all the important trips in addition to i.e. calls, e-mail and Skype. But we also have some small trips that are perfect to get you on the right track.
One of these is a 5 day ski trip with sleds crossing Finnmarksvidda. This is a trip which will give you an introduction to the camping, equipment, the cold, the sleds and the routines, while the nights this far North tend to offer spectacular Northern Lights as an additional outdoor experience. Finnmarksvidda is the trip you can join if you don’t feel like being away for too long but still want to get some time off to re-set and rewind and maybe to evaluate your assumptions and to get the feeling of what is in it.
Food and equipment
Joining a trip to the cold world, being outdoors for many days in a row, sleeping in a tent, skiing for about 8 hours on an average a day, still being able to keep up the pace, spirit, motivation, strength and also being able to enjoy it, obviously requires some attention to equipment.
Once you sign up for one of our trips, we will send you the complete and detailed equipmentlist that explains thoroughly what you need for the specific trip, why and how to use the equipment.
One of the main reasons we have had great success on our many trips, is because we supply the essential equipment that is not easy (nor practical) for you to get yourself. These items are essential in getting you through the day in a good way and ensure that you have a safe and trustworthy experience.
The equipment you need to get yourself might look like a lot, but this is usually items people will already have or could borrow from friends. You might have to buy some of it, but we will help you choosing the right equipment and all this will be discussed in detail with each and one of you. Then you should have a good set of usable equipment that you will be able to enjoy for many future trips as well.
The weight of the sled will depend on which trip you are going on as fuel and food adds up for each day with about 1,3 kilos. Some trips also require special equipment like climbing gear, polar bear protection, waterproof bags, etc. Sometimes we have to carry our stuff in backpacks to reach the glacier or good skiing ground, but we do not load to more than max 30 kilos, it is better to go two times.
On an average we can say that a sled weigh as follows:
- North Pole Last Degree 40 kg
- North Pole Full Length (with/without supplies) 75 kg /110 kilos
- South Pole Last Degree 40 kg
- Patagonia, Northern Icecap, 50 kg
- Greenland Spring 52 kg
- Greenland Fall 55 kg
- Svalbard – Nordaustlandet 40 kg
- Svalbard – Spisbergen crossing 40 kg
- Hardangervidda 25 Kg
- Finnmarksvidda 25 kg
- South Georgia 35 kg
To best prepare for pulling the sled and carrying in backpacks, refer to the training and preparations info. This topic will also be covered more into detail once you have signed up. If you are curious and want some more info either way, let us know.
We provide nutritious expedition food for each participant for all the days skiing. It will be enough calories for the trip, but if you feel like having some extra snacks, please feel free to bring it.
There will always be personal choices. We provide several types of freeze-dried dinners, and lunch with a mix of what you like best. Our selection of food to choose from is based on long experience where energy, taste and also preparation are key factors. We have limited time for breaks during the day, about 12-15 minutes at normally every 1,5 hours intervals.
Our normal day-to-day diet:
Børge’s homemade enriched oatmeal/porridge mix.
Choice of: Fruit soup or energy drink for hot water. Compressed biscuits rations and/or Flapjack (oatmeal cakes).
And/or potatochips, nuts and dried fruit.100-150 g chocolate per day. About 100 g piece of dried meat.
Choise of freeze dried dinners. Our partner for dinner is Real Turmat www.real.no. Instant soup, hot chocolate, coffee or tea as you wish.
All the food will be packed by you in daily rations and stored in bags provided by us prior to departure. There is always a day or so with packing and organizing before we start the trip. You will carry your own food and be responsible for it during the expedition.
Food- allergies or intolerances:
If you have any food- intolerances or allergies, we will together with you (and possibly with your doctor) advice the different ingredients you need to ensure the best nutrition but which is adapted to the diet you follow. You should test this beforehand to avoid any unpleasant surprises on the way.
If you need to be on a special diet, we recommend that you yourself prepare most of your food at home before we leave, so that you are sure to get what you need. It will in most cases be a possibility to ship the food to the destination beforehand together with the rest of the equipment.
Please let us know if you have special needs or concerns regarding food or nutrition, we will do our best to help.
Day by day
On Wednesday we fly in to Alta (ALF) from Oslo in the middle of the day and spend the day preparing, analysing the route and weather forecasts, packing food and readying ourselves.
Last check, then we take a car to our starting point. Then we are on our skis! After some kilometres we arrive at the Jotka Fjellstue and can’t resist going in for a cup of hot drinks. Then we proceed towards the open plains and camp when darkness descends.
We walk the whole day south-east towards Isejavre, the biggest lake on Finnmarksvidda, and are now really on the tundra as the landscape rolls out all around us. We pitch the tents again at dusk.
We cross over Isejavre. From here we will most probably leave the normal route to train and enhance our skills in navigation and look into natural indicators for navigation. And this is for a reason, as we are now into an area that most resembles the waste and flat expanses of traditional expedition targets like Greenland and Antarctica.
Today the terrain will gradually become more hilly again as we pass Øvre Mollesjokk and continue towards Ravnastua. How far we get depends on the strength of the team and what ‘Mother Earth’ has in store for us, but this is normally our last night camping out.
We arrive at the Sami town of Karasjok and stay the night together here – and may even sit on chairs having a well-deserved dinner!
We jump on the bus to Lakselv and Banak Airport (LKL). Here our ways part as we head for home.
This is a Kinder Egg! Not only will we take you to the most northerly and wildest part of Norway, we will cross Finnmarksvidda which is an adventure and an expedition in itself. And we will do it in a way so that you have every chance to enhance your skills for other Big Targets.
Finnmarksvidda is in the middle of Norway’s most northerly county - Finnmark, and at hight of winter it may well be compared to the most remote and coldest expedition in both Arctic and Antarctica. In spring the area is well visited, but we will do it while the Polar Nights still holds it’s grip over the north and the temperatures at night can sink to -30°C, and sometimes less , in these temperatures you will feel the power of the northern light flickering over the sky.
This is training, yes, but also a bit of an expedition as we believe that it is he best way of learning. To get the real taste, (we do not bring big groups), you are sure to find out what it is all about. Here nothing comes for free as the days are short, the temperatures low and the sledge for real. We aim to perfect camp routines, navigation, strategies and teamwork as we, at the same time, enjoy the scenery, the polar night and the peace of the waste plains.
Whatever your next trip/expedition may be, we want you to be prepared for it. By learning the tricks of winter survival under real conditions you will be more confident and your chances of reaching your future goals will increase.
Distance to be covered is in the region of 120 km and should take us 5 days. Long enough so that you can get necessary field experience.
This trip will be as a mini Greenland crossing, so you should be in reasonable good shape before showing up. Please read our training chapter for advice and also read out equipment list carefully, - and look forward to a fantastic trip and the most fun school you ever attended.
This Cool-School is our Polar Academy!
Training and preparing
Many wonder how to prepare physically for a polar expedition. This will vary from trip to trip and also for each individual. We will therefore provide individual training programs and advice for each participant if needed.
In general we expect people to carry a 20 kg backpack for 8 hours for several days on a row. That’s a physical exercise that is easy to measure, but actual training can and will consist of various methods.
Training and physical preparation for these trips typically consist of at least 3 training sessions a week for at least one hour each. Gradually this should be increased to 4 sessions a week, three months before departure, including one or two longer sessions lasting for more than two hours.
A combination of cycling, jogging, workout in the gym, walking with backpack or pulling rubber tyres is what we recommend. Its not where you do it that matters, but that you do it. Remember that a cycling session in the gym or a hard work out on the walking machine can be equally as efficient as a session outdoors.
There are two main issues with specific training. One is the physical shape needed to endure the trip you have signed up for and secondly to make your muscles, tendons and ligaments, basically the whole body, prepared for the load on the way. Not to forget the third reason, that physical training in general is very positive, something you will benefit from after the expedition as well. So, its only one thing to do when the goal is set, start training!
Note: Be careful in the beginning, start at a level you feel comfortable with and increase gradually. If you start out too hard you might experience overtraining and injuries. Consult a doctor or physician if you experience injuries. Don’t forget to stretch out well after each session. Eating well and healthy will also help preparing your body for the upcoming adventure. The trips are not super hard, but you will enjoy it more when you have done your homework and taken training and preparation serious.
As part of the preparations, we organize a weekend of training in Verdal, Norway late in late January or early February. The aim is to go through the basic skills for winter survival in order to be as well prepared as possible. We go through all the equipment and routines. During this training weekend we also get to know each other a bit beforehand, as becoming a team is an important part of the whole concept. We also open for one-on-one talks with those who would like to get some personal advise.
Joining the training weekend is free of charge.
We will cover most of the basic equipment, some food, tents etc, except personal equipment like clothes ski boots etc. This is also a great time to go to the sport shop, since some of the equipment needed for trips like this can be hard to find outside Norway. We can assist you with this as well.
You need to cover your flight tickets coming here, food and lodging before and after the training outdoors (if any, as the nights mainly will be spent in tents outdoors).
The training is voluntarily but highly recommended. This will help you and us to evaluate your assumptions and to put focus on the key points for further exercise and practice
More info on the training trip will be distributed when signing up for one of our trips.
We also do a extended training trip: The Finnmarksvidda Crossing
Every February for 5 days and 4 nights around the time of full-moon.
Finnmarksvidda is in Northern parts of Norway, above the Arctic Circle. This trip is a great way to train and learn the ropes of basic winter survival. It is a 5 day mini expedition that is relevant, cold and stunning as we very often have the Northern lights at night. Timed with the full February moon we normally have enough natural light for skiing as well.
The Finnmark trip is one of our regular trips (refer to the complete overview for all trips) but if you already are booked on any of our other trips, you will receive a discount.
Rates, dates and booking
2017 & 2018:
We are going back to Finnmarksvidda both in 2017 and 2018. There might be changes to the dates and price compared to 2016 so this price and dates are not confirmed. The program will be the same.
Contact us for more details or if you have any questions, or complete the booking if you know which year you can go.
The Price & Invoice:
The price is 12.000,- NOK. If you book one of our regular "long" trips (Greenland, NP; Patagonia, etc) the price is reduced to NOK 9.500,- (These are 2016 prices with possible change for 2017). And we offer a 10% discount for our returning customers on any other trip.
To be paid in full 90 days before departure, (minus the deposit). Refunding / pulling out clauses are dealt with in our Travel Conditions.
The price includes: Food while on the trip, rigged sledges, tents and camp equipment, stoves, pots and fuel, navigation tools, emergency beacon and Iridium phone. Guide.
The price does not include: Flight to Alta- and return plane ticket from Lakselv / Bandak airports. Food and shelter before start (we normally stay in camping huts, but you are free to choose accommodation to your liking). Personal equipment like underwear, jacket, pants, hoods and mittens. Sleeping bag and mattress, personal bags, skis and boots. Plus travel- and cancellation insurance.
The Deposit: We will send you a Deposit Invoice of 3.000,- NOK at the time you make your booking. The system works as follows: Your Booking Form will give you a place in the ‘queue’. But it is not binding in any way. It only gets serious when you receive and pay a Deposit Invoice. This is refundable according to our Travel Conditions. But this means you are in and the trip is on!
Booking - How to proceed
- If this is something for you, - send us the booking for your desired trip and your place is reserved. This will be kept for you until you have paid the deposit invoice. Then your place is guaranteed until the remaining amount is due.
- You will then receive our expedition-booklet that gives you more information about the trip, insurances, safety, personal training tips towards the trip, as well as info on the training in Oslo (for more info, refer to the training and preparations menu)
- We will also supply you with the complete equipmentlist and work with you to ensure that you know what is needed and included from both your- and our side.
- Personal information-form. By signing up on a trip, we need you to fill in a form for our records regarding health issues, your recent outdoor experiences- and background, passport- and insurance info as well as next-of-kin details.
- The invoice for the remaining amount will be sent to you about 3 months prior to departure (for some destinations the due-dates might be more than 90 days prior to departure. After full payment have been settled, you are guaranteed to get your place for your desired trip. You still have the right to cancel at this point, but depending on how close we are to the departure, some of our basic costs will have to be deducted from the deposit. (For more details on this refer to our terms & conditions)
|Duration:||Approx. 5 days|
|Price:||From 9.500,- NOK to 12.000 NOK|
|Sheduled for:||2016, 2017|
|Participants:||8 participants + guide|