Arctic Adventure: Ice is back in Tracks

Think of the Arctic and the Norwegian Arctic comes to mind and so might the Canadian Arctic with the Northwest Passage, Greenland or Baffin Bay. But wait, there is a new and exciting Arctic adventure that puts the Ice back in Tracks – the Russian Arctic – and it is all packaged on the stunning Wrangel and Herald Islands between the Chukchi Sea and East Siberian Sea believed to be the last place on earth where wooly mammoths survived!

This is Russia’s remote and wild eastern coastline only accessible by ship and it is here you will experience a surplus of wildlife rarely seen before. Breeding polar bears are in abundance, as are walrus, musk ox, lemmings, whales and the arctic fox to name but a few. Millions of seabirds habit these Islands, providing a spectacle that birders can only dream about. This is Siberia’s forgotten East coast and an untouched jewel. The work-horse of polar waters, the Kapitan Khlebnikov, is the ice-breaker ship that ventures to this Siberian wonderland. With no more that 110 guests and a crew of 70, it can plough through the thickest ice and take you to landscapes frozen in time.

Kapitan Khlebnikov ice-breaker
Kapitan Khlebnikov. Photo: Sam Crimmin

‘SAFARI’ may not spring to mind when contemplating the most northern part of Canada’s Arctic but this is another spectacular new trip added to our portfolio. A fly-in safari with top-end camping and gourmet cuisine amongst the granite cliffs and glaciers of the Nunavut area. Camping in luxury on the floe edge known as the ‘line of life’ is where we hope to see the elusive Unicorn of the Sea, the narwhal and the superb water life of various seal species, whales and of course the king of the Arctic the polar bear. Take the opportunity to snorkel and kayak and visit the Bylot Island Migratory Sanctuary, which attracts over 200,000 birds each year.

Unicorns of the Sea: the Narhwals

Raw puffin heart is a delicacy in Iceland but don’t let that put you off this unique country nor the fact that the majority of the population believes in elves! This spectacular country was one of the last places on earth to be habited by humans. Combined with Greenland our tailor-made trips are simply sensational. Recently back from a Greenland and Baffin voyage we were treated night after night with a dazzling show of the Aurora Borealis which has fired us up to add this light show to our Arctic pilgrimage.

north Norway aurora borealis
Aurora Borealis. Photo: Lea Ponzle

Still searching for the Northwest Passage? Henry Hudson (Hudson Bay), William Baffin (Baffin Island and Baffin Bay), Frederick William Beechey (Beechey Island) and John Rae were just a few of the explorers captured by this extraordinary sea route and it still entralls us today. We cannot ignore the requests by our Trackers who want to return for the second and even third time. And who would have known? A plankton called Neodenticula which vanished from the Atlantic Ocean roughly 800,000 years has just found its way into the Northwest Passage. So why can’t we?