7 Summits 8000ers Adventure Films Adventure Travel Africa Alaska Alaska Alpine style Ama Dablam Amazon Andes Annapurna Annapurna Antarctic Antarctic Archaeology Arctic Arctic Aviation Ballooning BASE jump and Paragliding Big Wall climbing Breaking News Broad Peak Buyers Guides Canoeing & Kayaking Caving Cho Oyu Climate change Climbing COVID-19 Cycling Denali Desert Dhaulagiri Dhaulagiri Elbrus Endurance Environment Everest Expeditions Exploration mysteries Explorers First ascents Flying Gasherbrum Gear Geography High altitude skiing Himalaya Hindu Kush History Ice Climbing Indigenous cultures K2 Kangchenjunga Karakorum Kilimanjaro Lhotse Long-distance hiking Long-distance Trekking Makalu Manaslu Manaslu Marathon Medical Misc Sports Mountain Mountaineering Nanga Parbat Natural History Nepal Nuptse Ocean Rowing Oceanography Oceans Patagonia Photos Polar Exploration Polar Research Poles Reviews Rivers Rowing/canoeing Science Sherpa Siberia Skiing Solo South Pole Space Sponsored Content Survival Swimming Tropics Uncategorized Unclimbed Volcanos Weather Wildlife Winter 8000ers Winter Himalaya

North Pole season closed down with last flight

Posted: May 14, 2014 10:55 am EDT


(By Correne Coetzer) Kenn Borek Air’s Twin Otter reached Bengt Rotmo about 2pm on May 13 and Eric Philips, Bernice Notenboom and Martin Hartley 17h30 on the way back, reported Lars Ebbesen at the Norwegian home base to ExWeb. Bengt’s position on May 12 was at approximately 88-87ºN, 062ºW and the Philips team at 84.8ºN, 77.1ºW. 


The pilot, well-know Troy, had a short weather window yesterday to pick up the skiers as weather was going to deteriorate. Eric Philips described their pick-up, "A cloud bank engulfed us an hour before the plane banked over us. We thought we were condemned to the ice for another week as the forecast was for continued bad weather and watched from a pressure ridge as Troy the pilot made at least ten passes in the distance before finally landing. We packed quickly and skied 45 minutes to the plane."


They stopped at Cape Discovery, their intended end point, to refuel and continued to Eureka Weather Station to spend the night there. 


Wrap-up Canada to 90ºN teams


The season started off with 5 teams attempting to ski from Canada (Cape Discovery, Ellesmere Island) to the Geographic North Pole and two from The North Pole to Canada. 


Gathered in Resolute Bay with 4 other teams, Italian solo skier, Michele Pontrandolfo, went home before the start due to Search and Rescue insurance money issues. Irish duo, Clare O’Leary and Mike O’Shea and solo Japanese skier Yasu Ogita started at Cape Discovery on March 7. On March 16 at N83.7, W077 the Irish team were injured when getting over a big blog of pressure ice, which overturned, and asked for a medical evacuation. Yasu Ogita, who prepared food for 50 days, realised that he was going to ran out of food on Day 42 when he asked for a pick up at 86º 16’43.8”N, 63º 38’43.8”W. 


Both unassisted unsupported, the Norwegian and American teams started at Cape Discovery on March 15. On Day 1, Lars Flesland and Kristoffer Glestad aborted their expedition due to frostbite on their feet. Ryan Waters and Eric Larsen are the only team who completed the full route successfully this year; by skiing, snowshoeing, swimming, paddling and crawling to the Pole. It took them 53 days to cover the 770 km (distance in a straight line; no drifting, sled relays or detours around pressure ridges and open water added). 





North Pole: Bengt Rotmo talks to ExWeb from the Arctic Ocean


AdventureStats successful expeditions:


Land to Geographic North Pole 

2014: 1x unassisted ski team from Canada

2013: 1x car team from Russia (did a crossing)

2010: 1x unassisted ski team from Canada

         3x assisted ski teams from CA

2009: 1x unassisted ski team from CA

         1x assisted ski team from CA

2008: 1x assisted ski team from Russia (winter exped)

2007: 1x assisted ski team from CA


Geographic North Pole to Land

2013: 1x assisted dog team to CA

2012: 1x unassisted ski and kayak team to Svalbard

2011: 2x assisted ski teams to CA

2009: 1x unassisted ski team to Greenland

2007: 1x unassisted ski and kayak team to Franz 

         Josef Land

         1x assisted ski team to Greenland


assisted = resupplied



A note on the North Pole daily ski distances: They are calculated in a straight line from where the skiers start in the mornings and end in the evenings. What is not added, are all the detours around high ridges, ice blocks, rubble or leads (open water). Also not added are the negative drift and relaying sleds.


A North Pole expedition covers the full distance between land and the Pole (90ºN).

The Cape Discovery route (Canada) to the Geographic North Pole is 780 km. 

Ward Hunt Island (Canada) start point calculates at 775 km.

A Degree of Latitude is 60 nm / 110 km. 


Geographic North Pole is at 90ºN

1996 position of the Magnetic North Pole: 

78° 35'42.00"N, 104° 11’54.00”W 

Resolute Bay: 74° 41.808N, 094° 49.402W



Ski Teams starting from Cape Discovery, Ellesmere Island, to the Geographic North Pole (90ºN)


Unassisted, Unsupported:

Team Eric Larsen and Ryan Waters

Last North Expedition:

Start March 15 at 83.043627N, 077.374263W

End My 6 at 90N


Ryan Waters, USA



Mountain Professionals

Mountain Professionals Facebook


Eric Larsen, USA








Starting from Geographic North Pole (90ºN) to Canada

Unassisted, Unsupported

Bengt Rotmo

(started April 21)





Starting from Geographic North Pole (90ºN) to Canada

Assisted, Unsupported

(Start April 4)

Eric Philips, Australia

Bernice Notenboom, The Netherlands / Canada

Martin Hartley, UK


Bernice Notenboom Twitter

Icetrek Expeditions Facebook

Expedition Twitter

Icetrek Twitter




Kite ski circumnavigation:


Eric McNair-Landry (CA) and Dix”e Dansercoer (BE)

Blog Greenland ICE Expedition


Facebook (Polar Circles) 

Twitter (Polar Circles)

Facebook (Pittarak Expeditions)


Michael Chavarin (FR) and Cornelius Strohm (DE)



Yuri Klaver (USA to Greenland via CA)

Website 1

Website 2


Spot Location




Follow blog posts (with RSS feeds) in the live News Stream on ExplorersWeb.






North Pole: Bengt Rotmo talks to ExWeb from the Arctic Ocean


The Hunger Game: Yasu Ogita recaps his North Pole expedition


Norwegian North Pole team talking to ExWeb from the high Canadian Arctic


Dmitry Shparo's Top 5 North Pole Tips


Irish North Pole team checking in at ExWeb from Resolute Bay


The cost of Arctic travel: Jerry Kobalenko talks to ExWeb


Yasunaga Ogita talking to ExWeb from the high Canadian Arctic


North Pole 2014 full route ski expedition list


ExWeb interview with Ryan Waters, "an unwritten and unexplainable mental edge”


ExWeb interview with Eric Larsen, "a mix of poetry and hell to the North Pole”


ExWeb interview with Bernice Notenboom, the Arctic and the world’s climate




Sean Chapple's insights: Laying the Foundations for Success


Weather links:


Canadian Ice Service


The Arctic Weather products link on the Canadian Ice Service IPY Legacy page


Two-day sea ice drifts for the whole Arctic Ocean on the Danish DMI website


ENVISAT ASAR images on the Polarview website


Canada Weather Office satellite image


NOAA Earth System Research Laboratory


University of Illinois cryosphere images


Wayne Davidson’s Extremely High Horizon Refraction


Wayne Davidson’s EH2R blog 



#polar #northpole2014  #northpoleclosedown






Eric Philips, front, Bangt Rotmo, middel, Bernice Notenboom, back left and Martin Hartley, back right, in Kenn Borek Air's Twin Otter. (Click images to enlarge)
Another of the Fifty Shades of White. This one on May 12. Martin Hartley says, "I promised to not send another pic of someone in a white blanket but if I can't escape it then why should you." Eric Philips reports, "With the pressure off we are enjoying these unfettered days immensely, seeing the polar sea with new eyes, despite our 11th consecutive day of poor visibility. Today we skied 6km in poor light but no wind."
courtesy Martin Hartley, SOURCE
The Philips team's route back to Ellesmere Island.
Cape Discovery route to the Geographic North Pole.
courtesy Arctic Ice Drift Maps 2013 : Image from http://www.arctic.noaa.gov / Mike O Shea and Clare O Leary, SOURCE