78°N

Polar Bear Trail

Svalbard

FINNISH | ENGLISH

BACKPACKING ON THE NORTHERNMOST EDGE OF THE WORLD

The 5-day Polar Bear Trail will take you to the ruggedly beautiful wilderness of Svalbard, where fragile Arctic nature and steep mountains covered with hundreds of millions of years old fossils open up in front of you. And if you wish, you can also experience the excitement of polar bear guarding under the midnight sun together with your guide. At the end of the hike, the ghost town of Pyramiden will throw you back into the Soviet Union era for one night!

1937 €

Participation is ensured by filling in a binding registration form.

“Thank you for a great trip! You kept us safe and helped us outdo ourselves”
– Marjukka, Hyvinkää

“There were a couple of challenging situations for me, but coping with them led to great experiences and feeling of success”
– Susanna, Helsinki

”I had been planning a trip to Svalbard for a while, but it was hard to imagine what was ahead – this trip fulfilled and exceeded all my expectations.”– Nina, Helsinki

“I wouldn’t have thought in advance that this is such a great place, even in my photos it looks too great to be true”
– Kirsi, Vesilahti

“Svalbard offered just the kind of challenges I had hoped for” – Aku, Tampere

“Thank you for all the expertise, guidance, positive attitude and safety” – Olli, Helsinki

Backpacking information

Date: July 7th – July 11th 2022 (Booking opens October 4th 2021)

Location: Dickson Land, Svalbard

Length: approx. 50-60 km (30-40 miles)

Duration: 5 days

Level of difficulty: 3/5 (rugged terrain, daily distances <10 km, highest elevation 400 m)

Passport: required

Visa: depends on your nationality

Travel insurance: required, extended insurance coverage mandatory (policy covering backpacking in remote and uninhabited arctic areas in Svalbard and helicopter rescue).

Meeting/starting point: Longyearbyen, Svalbard

Group size: minimum 4, maximum 12

Guides: 2

Price: 1937 € (including VAT)

Prepayment 387,40 € is due March 15th 2022, the rest 1549,60 € is due June 15th 2022. 

 

Please read the travel and cancellation policy

Included in the price

  • 2 certified wilderness guides (female & male) with years of experience on this route
  • Polar bear guarding 24/7
  • Backpacking food (dehydrated meals), cooker, pots, fuels
  • Tent (if your own is not suitable for rough conditions)
  • Guided ship cruise
  • Guided fossil hunting day
  • 1 night in Pyramiden hotel (accommodation in double rooms)
  • Guided tour of the ghost town
  • Rifles for self-defence against polar bears, shared satellite phone, gps and plb equipment for safety
  • Safety and route plans
  • Shared first aid packs
  • Permits and notifications to the Norwegian authorities
  • Compensating the CO2 climate impact of your flights together with the Finnish Taimiteko project (http://Taimiteko.fi)

Not included in the price

  • Flights to/from Longyearbyen
  • Accommodations in Longyearbyen before and after the tour
  • Personal hiking gear (clothing, footwear, sleeping bag, sleeping pad etc.)
  • Extended travel insurance coverage

Backpacking information

Date: July 7th – July 11th 2022 (Booking opens October 4th 2021)

Location: Dickson Land, Svalbard

Length: approx. 50-60 km (30-40 miles)

Duration: 5 days

Level of difficulty: 3/5 (rugged terrain, daily distances <10 km, highest elevation 400 m)

Passport: required

Visa: depends on your nationality

Travel insurance: required, extended insurance coverage mandatory (policy covering backpacking in remote and uninhabited arctic areas in Svalbard and helicopter rescue).

Meeting/starting point: Longyearbyen, Svalbard

Group size: minimum 4, maximum 12

Guides: 2

Price: 1937 € (including VAT)

Prepayment 387,40 € is due March 15th 2022, the rest 1549,60 € is due June 15th 2022. 
Please read the travel and cancellation policy

Included in the price

  • 2 certified wilderness guides (female & male) with years of experience on this route
  • Polar bear guarding 24/7
  • Backpacking food (dehydrated meals), cooker, pots, fuels
  • Tent (if your own is not suitable for rough conditions)
  • Guided ship cruise
  • Guided fossil hunting day
  • 1 night in Pyramiden hotel (accommodation in double rooms)
  • Guided tour of the ghost town
  • Rifles for self-defence against polar bears, shared satellite phone, gps and plb equipment for safety
  • Safety and route plans
  • Shared first aid packs
  • Permits and notifications to the Norwegian authorities
  • Compensating the CO2 climate impact of your flights together with the Finnish Taimiteko project (http://Taimiteko.fi)

Not included in the price

  • Flights to/from Longyearbyen
  • Accommodations in Longyearbyen before and after the tour
  • Personal hiking gear (clothing, footwear, sleeping bag, sleeping pad etc.)
  • Extended travel insurance coverage

The Polar Bear Trail will take you to the legendary rugged scenery of Svalbard on the 78th latitude.

During the Polar Bear Trail you will experience the magic of the permafrost covered islands of the Svalbard. Here you are surrounded by mountains, glaciers and rare wonders of arctic nature: plants and animals that have adapted to the barren environment of these islands on the northernmost edge of the world. You will also see stunning geological phenomena and ancient traces from long-gone eras of the earth in quick rewind. And in the midst of all these marvels you have to keep an eye on your surroundings, because you’re on someone else’s territory – this is where the polar bear is at home!

The final highlight of the Polar Bear Trail is the abandoned mining town of Pyramiden. It was once the northernmost city in the world and served as the administrative center of Soviet Union’s and later Russia’s mining activities in Svalbard. During a guided tour in the ghost town you can sense the atmosphere of a lost socialist civilization. The last night of the hike you will sleep at the Pyramiden Hotel, a time capsule where modern Russia meets the ghosts of the Soviet Union.

Your journey into the arctic wilderness starts from Skansbukta Bay on the northwest shore of the Billefjorden Fjord. From the estuary of the Skansdalselva River, we hike around the Jotunfonna Glacier through the wilderness and finally reach the ghost town Pyramiden. Along the way, you will experience the silence of the wilderness, see wildlife, stumble upon fossils and be enchanted by the changing landscapes.

The total distance will be roughly 50 – 60 km (30 – 40 miles) and daily distance about 10 km (6 miles) equal to 5 – 8 hours of walking with backpacks per day. In some places the terrain is quite demanding and some ascents/descents are steep. The challenges of the Polar Bear Trail also include the coolness of the Arctic summer. Note: it is not possible to quit the tour prematurely (except in an emergency). For this reason, participants are required to have previous experience of multi-day backpacking tours as well as good physical and mental fitness.

Take on this unique challenge and start your journey to the northernmost edge of the world!

Participants will receive more detailed information on the necessary travel arrangements and schedules on a separate password-protected additional page.

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