Aventurière • Norvège
“Nous, aventuriers, sommes des ambassadeurs de l’environnement qui témoignent haut et fort de la rapidité des changements aux pôles”
Cecilie Skog est la seule femme au monde à avoir gravi les sept plus hauts sommets de la planète. Puéricultrice de formation, cette aventurière de 34 ans a réalisé ce qu’on appelle l’Explorers Grand Slam, le pôle Sud et le pôle Nord géographiques (2005 et 2006) ajoutés aux sept sommets. Elle a également parcouru à ski 500 miles depuis l’île d’Ellesmere au Canada jusqu’au pôle Nord géographique.
I am not a scientist, I am merely an adventurer who has been fortunate enough to see some of my dreams come true. In 2005 and 2006 I travelled to the North and South Pole. Two of my good friends joined me on these projects. We had already crossed Greenland prior to our South Pole journey. But the Arctic Ocean was unknown territory to us. The Norwegians first attempted to conquer the North Pole at the end of the 1800s, but it was not until 1982 that a Norwegian claimed this victory. With the help of snowmobiles, Ragnar Thorseth achieved what the famous explorers Fridtjof Nansen and Hjalmar Johansen had set out to do almost 100 years earlier. We decided to use skis and sledges. Our plan was to orient ourselves using the sun and our shadows. Not only is this method both quicker and more efficient than using a compass, it was also a method we had previously used. However, this proved to be a challenge as we kept encountering whiteout, in which it was hard to manoeuvre. Whiteout occurs when the ocean evaporates from open holes in the ice and the vapour settles like a thick fog. The holes in the ice not only caused ocean fog, but also turned into a challenge themselves. We presume that when Ragnar Thorseth drove the snowmobile to the North Pole, he was blessed with thick and solid ice. On our journey, the ice was extremely thin in vast areas and the number of holes was far above our expectations. Some days we had to cross up to 25 holes; some were too wide to swim across, resulting in long detours. The weather was also rougher than envisaged. The wind caused difficult conditions during the day and night. To lessen the weight, we brought a light, small tunnel tent instead of a dome tent, which is heavier, but more stable in windy weather. So we had to take turns safeguarding the tent poles some nights. The climatic challenges made the expedition more strenuous than expected. Currently, we are planning new expeditions to the poles. This time, with an environmental focus on our journey as well. We feel that we can be ambassadors for the environment by giving voice to what we see en route to the rapidly changing poles. As eye witnesses, we feel we can direct additional focus on this important issue. I am merely an adventurer, who dreams of breathing fresh air, living moments in the wild beauty of nature. If the next generation is to enjoy this beauty, we need to strive for a healthier planet and fight for a cleaner world.