PolarExplorers' North Pole 10 K Ski Expedition selected as one "The World's 50 Most Extraordinary and Memorable Travel Experiences"
By Chris Santella
Few travelers are prepared to mush 475 miles through temperatures of -35 degrees Fahrenheit (and colder) to reach the North Pole as explorer Robert Peary and his partner Matthew Henson did in 1909 - and as Rick Sweitzer did in 1992. Thanks to Sweitzer and the adventure travel company PolarExplorers, you can participate in a miniature North Pole expedition that distills the thrill of reaching the top of the world in the course of a 5-day adventure via jet, helicopter and cross country skis.
Your expedition begins in Oslo, Norway, with a reception at the Fram Museum, which is devoted to the history of polar exploration. After a night at the Hotel Continental, you'll rise early for a two-and-a-half hour flight to Longyearbyen, a selltement on the island of Spitsbergen. Spitsbergen is 400 miles north of the northernost point in Europe. Though isolated by anyone's standards (the island has been chosen by the Nowegian government to house a doomsday seed bank), Longyearbyen is surprisingly well appointed with fine lodging and eateries, thanks to the cola mining operations that were established here in the early twentieth century, and to the town's more recent emergence as the gateway to Arctic adventure.