The Ice Warrior Arctic Pole Expedition 2010

Official Website

From 15.03.2010 to 10.06.2010 - Status: postponed

To the Northern Pole of Inaccessibility

To the Northern Pole of Inaccessibility

© International Polar Foundation

Jim McNeill and his team of non-professionals are attempting to reach the most remote point on the whole of the Arctic coastline, a place known by some as the North Pole of Inaccessibility.

As the name would suggest, the North Pole of Inaccessibility is the only spot on the world map not yet reached by humans. It is not very well known and does not figure very high on the agenda of many polar adventure professionals. Nonetheless, it is the central point of the Arctic Ocean, as well as the geographic area furthest from all of the coastline bordering the Arctic sea-ice. Which is no doubt what piqued the interest of the man behind the project, Jim McNeill.

This will not be McNeill's first attempt, either. In 2006, accompanied by two clients who were also polar novices, he attempted unsuccessfully to reach the 4 poles in the Arctic: the Geographic North Pole, the Magnetic North Pole, the Geomagnetic North Pole and the North Pole of Inaccessibility. This time, he will be renewing his part of his attempt, but focusing on the North Pole of Inaccessibility only. It will be, as his press kit states rather loftily, ‘The Last True World First', or ‘The Unconquered Everest of the Polar Regions'.

According to the information provided, four teams of 7 members will each complete a leg of the trip throughout the 750 nautical miles that includes the journey from Ellesmere Island and the better known Ward Hunt, which these days is the usual starting point for most of the expeditions attempting to reach the North Pole. One important condition for being allowed to join the group is the £12 000 fee (€13 700) per person, plus some serious fitness training.

As is usually the case in today's world of polar adventure, there is also a serious scientific side to the project. McNeill's press information states that while there may be sophisticated devices for measuring the thickness of the Arctic sea-ice by satellite, nothing can compare with measurements taken by hand on site. Which is precisely what McNeill intends doing, ably assisted by his novice adventurers. These measurements will also form an important database that can be used for confirming the readings taken by satellite. In particular, McNeill is emphasising the fact that the area of the sea-ice where the expedition is heading has never had any manual measurements taken of the thickness of the snow and ice. This new data will without doubt be of great value in the overall scientific analysis of the melting of the polar icecap.

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