Explorers plan first Russia-Canada voyage via North Pole

Russian and Canadian explorers are planning to cross the North Pole on specially-designed vehicles next spring.

A Russian-led expedition aims to make the first ever crossing from Russia’s Arctic shore into Canada over the North Pole.


The 8,000 kilometers long voyage is set to begin on February 17 2013 and expected to reach Canada by the end of May, expedition leader Vladimir Chukov said to Reuters.

Eight explorers will set out in two specially-designed vehicles with overinflated tyres that allow for travel over the snowdrifts and dangerous Arctic ice cap, where above-freezing temperatures in the summer months can cause the ice to break up.

The group, including two Russian-born Canadian citizens, plan to observe polar bear populations at the pole and test for climate change and signs of global warming, the results of which Chukov said the team would share later with scientists.

The expedition will serve for some of the first tests of Russia’s GLONASS satellite navigation technology, Moscow’s bid to challenge the dominant U.S. global positioning system (GPS).