North Pole Express: Barneo Ice Camp

Barneo Base Camp
North Pole: Barneo Ice Camp
28 Passengers

The pinnacle of this five-day expedition is spending two nights at 89° north at Barneo Ice Camp. This seasonal, fly-in base camp is truly the most unique North Pole experience on offer and ideal for those seeking a short, but adventurous journey to the top of the world. You’ll be one of a limited group to land on the frozen runway and take up temporary residence on this unequalled base camp on the icy sea of the North Polar Basin.

Established each year to be a functioning Russian science and logistics station, the site is operated by the Expedition Center for the Russian Geographical Society. Among your fellow guests and base staff, you’ll meet scientists, pilots, mechanics, engineers, and explorers.

This expedition offers fully-guided opportunities for exploring the northernmost Arctic by air via helicopter flight as well as on land by snowshoe and on foot. Guests can take in lectures and presentations by the expedition team and resident scientists, and enjoy heated facilities and hearty meals, all accessible within an approx. 2.5 hour flight from Longyearbyen, Svalbard (Norway).

Expedition In Brief:
• Fly-in to one of the most remote, extraordinary expedition base camps in the world
• Reach the top of the world by Antonov AN-74 aircraft and Mi8 helicopter
• Special edition parka, provided for arctic temperatures of -25°F (-32°C) on average
• Learn first-hand about the scientific and research activities being conducted at this research station
• Explore the unique culture of Longyearbyen, Norway before and after the base camp

Route Map

Day 1Arrive Longyearbyen, Norway
Day 2Barneo Ice Camp
Day 3North Pole
Day 4Return to Longyearbyen
Day 5Depart Longyearbyen

Itinerary Note:

The itinerary outlined below is only a sample of a typical expedition to Barneo Ice Camp. Day-to-day activities may vary and are also weather dependent. Please note that all flights in the itinerary may be earlier or later than scheduled, depending on weather conditions.

Day — 1 Arrive Longyearbyen, Norway

Upon arrival in Longyearbyen, Svalbard, you will be met at the airport by a member of the expedition team. After settling in to your hotel, there will be a briefing about Barneo Ice Camp. You will be updated on current camp conditions, expedition details, and your departure the following day to 89° north. This evening the group will get together for a welcome dinner. Guests will receive a special edition parka (yours to keep) and will be outfitted with special cold weather boots, on loan for the expedition.

Day 2 — Barneo Ice Camp

Accompanied by a member of the expedition team, we’ll transfer to the airport and board the special Antonov AN-74 aircraft for the approx. 2.5 hour flight to Barneo. One of the unique thrills of this expedition is landing on the ice runway at Barneo, a seasonal air strip constructed on the polar ice cap each year, and the only facility that allows external access to the base. Shortly after arriving at camp, lunch will be served and an introductory briefing will be conducted. Barneo is a functioning research base for scientists and adventurers from around the world, and it’s always a hive of activity. Tonight, following dinner, you’ll rest up in your heated tent — each co-ed tent houses 8-10 guests and is equipped with camp beds — to prepare for your exciting adventure ahead.

Day 3 — North Pole

Destination – North Pole! The excitement mounts as you prepare for your Mi8 helicopter flight to the northernmost point on earth. Here there is only ice, and the Arctic Ocean is approximately 2.5 miles (4 km) deep at this point. Weather conditions are closely monitored, and the flight will be scheduled accordingly. We’ll aim to land at 90° north. Once there, savor the moment – pose for pictures, enjoy a celebratory drink, walk around the world together, take it all in. You’ll spend about an hour here – walking, celebrating, and capturing those moments on camera before the approx. 30-minute helicopter flight back to camp.

At the base, there will be lectures about polar exploration, North Pole expeditions and climate science. Enjoy a hearty, hot lunch and a warm beverage. Later this evening, after a celebration dinner, you’ll learn more about the history, geography and wildlife of the area. Presentation topics range from the first intentional drifting ice station, to arctic mammals including walrus, ringed seals, ribbon seals and polar bears. Tonight, you will also receive your certificate from the Russian Geographical Society Expedition Centre, certifying you have reached the Geographic North Pole.

Day 4 — Return to Longyearbyen

After a relaxing breakfast, you’ll have some time to wander around the camp and take in the last moments of your pristine surroundings before you bid farewell to Barneo Ice Camp and return to Longyearbyen. In Longyearbyen you may wish to visit the museum, shop for souvenirs, or just walk through the town. A special farewell dinner is planned to swap stories and recount the details of your expedition to Barneo Ice Camp and the North Pole.

Day 5 — Depart Longyearbyen

Transfer to the airport after breakfast today for your return flight home, or spend time exploring Longyearbyen.

IMPORTANT REMINDER Embracing the unexpected is part of the legacy – and excitement – of expedition travel. When traveling in extremely remote regions, your expedition staff must allow the sea, the ice and the weather to guide route and itinerary details. The above is a tentative outline of what you’ll experience on this expedition – please be aware that no specific itinerary can be guaranteed.

PLEASE NOTE: Dates of operation may be altered due to weather and ice conditions. Please bear this in mind when making international flight arrangements. Consider purchasing flexible, changeable airline tickets, or booking a one-way flight home after completing the expedition, to help reduce ticket change fees. These delays may not be covered by travel insurance

* Itinerary may be subject to change