The North Pole. Worlds best treasure hunt.

When Peary allegedly arrived at the North Pole in 1909 his comment was: “At last the pole is mine”.
He had lost all this toes during his polar exploits and made many enemies among other explorers with his self absorbed and ruthless behavior.
He then continued to ski back to Canada where he returned in June.
All that time for 6 months he skied on the frozen Arctic Ocean, in a record 34 days, supposedly because the dogs smelled their own scent from their trail North and knew they were going home.

Many people have challenged his expedition as being impossible to do in the amount of time he claimed.
If Peary would be alive today he could not copy his achievements from a century back because he would simply run into water.
That is how fast the Arctic has changed and continues to change.

Some are surprised how fast we have skied to the North Pole.
We have no dogs to blame but featureless one year ice which allowed us to ski rapidly across its frozen surface.

Yesterday we arrived at 16:35 at the geographic North Pole.
Henk-Jan, our Basecamp manager among others in our team already knew this well before we did.
Our Iridium Rock Star, a tracking device, was sending GPS coordinates continuously when we were 100 meters from our target.

With every transmission an email with our coordinates was sent to those who follow us closely.
What is amazing is that you can only really step on the North Pole for one second before it has moved somewhere else and yesterday with zero wind, we theoretically should find it without difficulty.
With GPS and Rock Star in hand we scouted for “True North”.

We counted down the meters to go but when we got to 1 meter the North Pole had already taken a turn.
We worked on a grid: two steps left, right, one foreword and then backwards waiting for the GPS to catch up with our movement.

GPS is not entirely accurate so we don’t really know if we are chasing the pole to the 90 degree mark or if we are meters from it.
Only once after skiing in giant circles did we get the 90 degrees on the screen but when Ann pressed ‘mark my waypoint’ the North Pole had come and gone.
My GPS blurbs a message: “You have arrived at the North Pole” so we took this as a the moment to celebrate.
We hug and congratulate each other with our victory.

The North Pole is so elusive, such a hard objective.
The entire expedition we are trying to get to it, we risk frostbites, polar bear attacks, injuries and fatigue and then moments from being so close, she runs away and let you chase her and you may never find her again.
Perhaps that is most fascinating about being here, the North Pole is the best treasure hunt in the world.
This morning we drifted already 7 km from the pole, on the western longitude – somewhere towards the USA or Canada.
We have crossed 150 time zones and circle around Russia, Greenland, Alaska and Canada.
We stay on the North Pole until the Russians pick us up on Friday night.
Until then we continue our snow measurements and document our expedition.
Stay tuned for more.

This expedition was made possible by the generous support of all our sponsors.
Without you we won’t here.
See our sponsor page for more details.

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