2014 – Queen Maud Land

In mid-December 2013, 6 athletes travelled to Queen Maud Land, the Norwegian territory in Antarctica. For 50 days they explored the mountains and desert plains of this vast world of snow and ice.

Queen Maud Land

Included in the 900kg of equipment on this trip is advanced climbing equipment, a kilometer of rope, base rigging and wingsuits, speedwing sails for flying and kiting, bikes, back country and mountain skis, sleds, tents, plus lots of warm clothing. And a bike with enormous tires. The whole trip can be thought of as preparation, creating a tight-knit team that can summit the legendary mountain Ulvetanna (the Wolf’s Tooth) – and jump off it. This is the expedition’s final and biggest goal.

The team, consisting of 2 women and 4 men, will establish a basecamp in the area close to Ulvetanna, in the Ovrin mountains in Fimbulheimen. Using this as a base, the team will head out on trips and “missions” of varying duration.
The project’s goal is to showcase the forgotten and secluded Norwegian territory, which has some of the world’s most spectacular scenery, using modern technology and experienced and insightful outdoor adventurers. And, of course, to undertake an adventurous expedition project filled with adrenaline-pumping activities in a safe manner, with minimal impact on a fragile environment.  The timing of the trip is no coincidence, celebrating the 200th anniversary of the Norwegian Constitution, and the 75th anniversary of the annexing of Queen Maud Land.
PARTICIPANTS

Espen Fadnes (34) – Molde

The man from Molde has spent his adult life in the world of extreme sports, and lives in Chamonix, France. In recent years he’s turned his hobby into his livelihood, specialising in wingsuit flying. He has said that no trip is complete until the evening’s beer has been opened, and that the only problem with winter is the cold.  Espen is anxious to see how he’ll manage on a long trip that will be, in many ways, very different to his usual life amongst the chairlifts. Espen is dreaming about finding the perfect back country snow. www.espenfadnes.com

– I’m most looking forward to the moment when the sound of the aircraft disappears, and we’re standing alone in Queen Maud Land, with a totally new world to discover.

Kjersti Eide (33) – Bergen

Kjersti Eide (Bergen) is an ICU nurse, a speedwing flyer, and a basejumper. She is one of the few female basejumpers in Norway who jump with a wingsuit, but she’s yet to sleep in a tent during winter. Kjersti reckons her biggest challenges will be hanging out on the mountainside, and dealing with the cold. Kjersti is a charming, happy, warm and thoughtful person who brings a breath of fresh air to a testosterone-dominated world. She’s really looking forward to 50 days in a tent – without a shower…www.kjerstieide.com

– I am very excited to see how I cope with crawling out of a (hopefully) warm sleeping bag in a freezing cold tent!

Aleksander Gamme (37) – Hamar

Expedition and programme leader, guest speaker, and one of Norway’s most active and high-profile adventurers. Aleksander has made expeditioning his livelihood, and is passionate about large, ambitious adventures. He has led many expeditions to the Himalaya, including to Mt Everest, as well as several trips across Greenland, crossed the Sahara on a tandem bike, and trained as a safari guide in South Africa. He completed the world’s longest trek on skis in 2011/2012 in Antarctica, and is looking forward to returning to the continent, to spice up his working week. www.gamme.no

– This is the ultimate adventure. I’m proud to have created this project, but know that I’m going to feel the responsibility I have in making sure everyone returns safely home again! 

 

Ingeborg Jakobsen (38) – Askøy

The trip’s video/photographer likes to work on projects with plenty of challenges and great experiences. In other words, this is a dream project! As she says herself, “I’m looking forward to this trip. It’s a good feeling”. Ingeborg has several years’ experience capturing demanding footage, and her film repertoire includes 11 seasons of 71 Degrees North (71 grader nord), No Boundaries (Ingen grenser), The Big Journey (Den store reisen), The Amazing Race, and many others. Ingeborg has years of experience in the outdoors, but has never been on such a long trip. She’s particularly keen to see what it’ll be like working in -30 degrees, hanging off the side of a mountain, and eating expedition food for 50 days.

– This will undoubtedly be my toughest/most fun film recording to date! 

Jonas Langseth (34) 

Jonas has been an officer in the military for several years, is a trained nurse, and has worked as an ambulance officer. He has further training in alpine medicine, and is a volunteer in the Langfjella Alpine Rescue Team, where he has responsibility for medical care. Amongst Norway’s most experienced all-round mountain climbers and instructors, Jonas has significant experience in ice-climbing, sports climbing, and big-wall climbing, including the Kjerag massif, Trollveggen and Yosemite.

 

Andy Kirkpatrick (42) – England

This Englishman is part of the elite international world of big-wall climbing. A prize-winning author, guest speaker, stand-up comedian and family-man, who is known for seeking out spectacular climbing routes around the world, preferably in wintertime. His tasks are to ascend the steepest slopes and, being the team’s only “foreigner”, to make observations about the Norwegian culture… www.andy-kirkpatrick.com