The Expedition Trip Notes provide detailed information and background for Adventure Consultants' North Spitsbergen—Hike, Ski & Sail Expedition.
You can view the trip notes online by clicking the image or download a pdf by clicking the following link:
North Spitsbergen—Hike, Ski & Sail Trip Notes 2024
You will find the guides to be companionable and strong expedition leaders with considerable power and willingness to see you achieve your goals.
Head Office Support Team
Running successful journeys and expeditions is more about experience, knowledge and strategic management than any other factors. As an organisation, we place a substantial amount of time and resources into ensuring our trips are well planned and supported. You can be assured that the AC staff will provide you with friendly advice and knowledgeable support throughout the planning stages of your trip and we will be there to provide backup while the trip is running.
Kelly McLaren, Expedition Liaison
Having worked for Adventure Consultants since 2004, Kelly has gained a vast knowledge of AC expeditions and treks. In her role as Expedition Liaison, Kelly will assist with the planning and logistics for your trip, providing useful information, reminders and answering any questions to ensure you arrive well prepared.
Expedition members will be provided with pre-trip medical advice and a medical questionnaire and asked to visit their family physician to receive a full medical examination. This information will be sighted only by the expedition leader and our medical adviser and treated with full confidentiality.
Level of Experience Required
The expedition is ship-based and although we spend as much time as possible ashore, you are welcome to remain aboard the ship if you like. We travel in remote areas without access to sophisticated medical facilities, so you should be in good general health.
For basic snowshoeing and hiking excursions you just need to be in reasonably good shape and health. These day trips usually last between 2 and 6 hours. Keep in mind that there are no paths and that you will be travelling over fairly rugged terrain and will be taking on some hills.
Those who wish to take part in our ski mountaineering activities should be experienced ski mountaineers who have mastered techniques for both ascent and descent in challenging, snow-covered alpine terrain. Participants must be in good physical condition, as a typical day involves climbs on mountaintops averaging heights of 800–1,100m/2,600–3,600ft) and downhill skiing from those points. The accumulated altitude over a given day can exceed 1,000m/3,300ft. Skiers will be asked to fill out a questionnaire highlighting ski mountaineering experience.
Each of our trips is individually rated according to its physical and technical difficulty, displayed in the icons towards the top of each trip page. You can click on the accompanying question mark for additional descriptions and the full run-down of our grading system is available on our Difficulty Ratings page.
All meals, including snacks, coffee and tea are provided onboard and most dietary requirements can be catered for by the chefs if notified in advance.
Clothing & Equipment
Snowshoes are provided but members are expected to bring their own appropriate clothing. Members must also provide personal equipment for specific activities such as ski mountaineering. A full clothing and equipment list will be provided to all expedition members upon sign up for the expedition.
The ship is well suited for expedition cruising among small islands and offers good open deck viewing areas. In addition, the following activities are available during the expedition:
Snowshoeing/Hiking: There will be ample opportunity to explore inland from the polar shorelines with a wide variety of snowshoeing expeditions built for everyone. There are usually a range of walks offered on each landing, ranging from a casual stroll to a challenging day hike. Snowshoes are provided and our experienced guides will be able to recommend an appropriate hike based on your fitness level.
Ski Mountaineering: Our optional ski mountaineering excursions from the ship allow you to explore pristine peaks and majestic mountains in a rugged fjord system. These outings will be led by experienced mountain guides and involve both skiing and mountain climbing in challenging alpine terrain with steep ground and deep snow cover.
Zodiac cruises: Two inflatable rubber crafts (Zodiacs) enable landing and wildlife viewing opportunities in otherwise inaccessible areas. There will be excursions on land for three to six hours per day over untracked area. According to conditions (weather, ice, etc,) or the passengers’ wishes, the program can sometimes be adjusted. Ample time will be devoted to wildlife, vegetation, geography and history. Our knowledgeable guides assist on these outings, providing detailed information. This is supplemented by lectures on board which cover topics such as wildlife, nature and history.
We sail in the Rembrandt Van Rijn, which was originally built as a herring lugger in 1947. It was then rebuilt as a three-mast passenger sailing schooner in the Netherlands in 1994, sailing in Spitsbergen (1994–1996) and the Galápagos (1998– 2001).
The vessel underwent an additional rebuilding and refurbishment programme in 2011, including a complete renewal of communication and navigation systems.
The vessel is is 49.50m/62ft long, 6.65m/22.9ft broad and has a draft of 2.8m/8ft. It can host 33 passengers in 16 cabins with a crew of 12, including 2 tour guides.
There are three types of berth available on the ship and spaces can be purchased as an individual bed in a cabin shared with others, as a private cabin fully occupied by 2 or 3 passengers accordingly or as a private cabin with sole occupancy.
| Triple Porthole
| Twin Interior
| Twin Porthole