Home News Franco-Finnish adventuress leaves for North Pole

Franco-Finnish adventuress leaves for North Pole

Published on 08/03/2004

HELSINKI, March 5 (AFP) - Finnish-French adventuress Dominick Arduin on Friday set off from northern Russia on skis in an attempt to become the first woman to make her way to the geographical North Pole alone.

All in all, the 43-year-old daredevil hopes to cover 1,0000 kilometers (620 miles) before she completes the challenge in about two months.

“The first day and eight kilometers is behind her – under the most inhumane conditions of the Arctic Ocean,” the expedition’s support crew said in a statement.

From where she was dropped off by helicopter on Cape Arctishesky, near Khatanga in Russian Siberia, she could just ski for half a day before being met by a 55-kilometer (34-mile) stretch of only partly frozen water, the crew added.

“As expected the ice conditions near the drop-off zone, and still near the continent, are difficult. First days will probably be the toughest with plenty of packed ice and open water,” it read.

According to her support crew, Arduin had said it would take her two days to paddle across the water in her sledge, which also doubles as a canoe, before she could strap on her skis again.

Last year, she had to abandon her first attempt to reach the North Pole after just a few days, after she and her equipment plunged through the ice and got soaked.

The accident came at a high price – she had all of her toes amputated.

Cold feet will not be a problem this time around however, she told AFP, since she now is equipped with special battery-heated boots and a solar-powered charger.

Although born in France, Arduin has lived in Finnish Lapland for the past 15 years, where she runs an Arctic adventures firm for visiting tourists.


                                                              Subject: France news