Real gap year adventure

SIR - Gap-year students with a lust for adventure and a passion for environmental science are urged to apply for the last few places for The British Schools Exploring Society s Extreme Arctic expedition to Svalbard this spring. Due to unprecedented demand

SIR - Gap-year students with a lust for adventure and a passion for environmental science are urged to apply for the last few places for The British Schools Exploring Society's Extreme Arctic expedition to Svalbard this spring.

Due to unprecedented demand, places are filling quickly and the application deadline has been brought forward to Monday 2nd November 2009.

Svalbard, a far-flung snowy archipelago on the edge of the Arctic Ocean, is just 600 miles from the North Pole. At 78 degrees north, the average temperature on arrival in April is -20C, with the islands already experiencing 24 hour daylight.

Living in tents and snow caves in sub-zero temperatures, the young explorers will be taught how to survive in the extreme cold before venturing further afield as weather improves, allowing access to unspoiled landscapes as far as the eye can see.


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Mountaineering, cross-country skiing and travelling with pulks across the mountain tops, valleys, and tundra, the team will experience the vast expanse of astounding natural beauty, with the freedom, under the guidance of world-class leaders, to explore wherever they choose.

The young explorers will also be working alongside highly qualified scientists to conduct glacial geomorphology and phenology studies, contributing to long-term projects concerning the measurement of key indicators of climate change. In addition, an ornithological survey will also be undertaken, gathering and collating data on some of the indigenous species.

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Those taking part will have to be physically fit, enthusiastic and resourceful in order to comfortably live under canvas for the duration of the expedition and to bear the mental and physical hardships of such an adventure. Any young people inspired by this opportunity, brave enough to take on the challenge and keen to experience the adventure of a lifetime should see www.bses.org.uk for more details.

Tor Harmer,

BSES Expeditions

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