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Schoolgirl sets off on 112km expedition to ski to the geographical North Pole

By Olga Gertcyk
08 April 2015

Adventurous Alyona plans to dance and play football on the roof of the world after beating off competition to join polar team.

Alyona Belyaeva, 16, will join six other youngsters from across Russia on the Eighth Youth Polar Expedition. Picture: Alyona Belyaeva

An adventurous schoolgirl from the Urals has spoken about fulfilling a dream by being part of a team to ski to the North Pole.

Alyona Belyaeva, 16, will join six other youngsters from across Russia on the Eighth Youth Polar Expedition which will culminate on the roof of the world on April 23.

The group is made up of five boys and two girls, from Moscow, Moskovskaya oblast, Yekaterinburg, Stavropol, Kirov, and Novosibirsk, along with famous travellers Matvey Shpiro and Boris Smolin, and Russia’s Minister of Science and Education Dmitryi Livanov.

They were chosen from 40 contestants who had won science competitions, having shown great endurance during a training camp in Karelia where they skied 100km a day.

Alyona Belyaeva


Alyona Belyaeva


Alyona Belyaeva

Alyona Belyaeva in a wetsuit in the training centre (top). Alyona Belyaeva and her schoolmates in a training camp in Karelia. Pictures: Alyona Belyaeva

Alyona is currently in Moscow with the explorers, making final preparations for the trip, but will leave by plane and helicopter for the research unit at Barneo on Wednesday. From Thursday they will edge north 112km over the frozen ice pack to the geographical North Pole.

The schoolgirl, who has a passion for dancing, said she loves travelling and is excited about her expedition.

She said: 'I have managed to visit Italy, France, Czech Republic, Austria, Germany, Poland, and Belarus with my dancing team, and together with my classmates I have been backpacking in Perm Krai.

Alyona Belyaeva


Alyona Belyaeva

The schoolgirl, who has a passion for dancing, said she loves travelling and is excited about her expedition. Pictures: Alyona Belyaeva

'I was left with fantastic impressions about the training camp, mostly because of the people. All the guys are unique and interesting, and absolutely all of them deserve to go to the North Pole. During the training in Karelia I wasn’t even thinking of winning, I was simply enjoying myself.

'On April 8th we're due to leave Moscow by plane, and then take a helicopter, and on the 9th we're landing at Barneo. Then we will be training, and from the 10th to the 18th we'll be moving towards the North Pole.

North Pole

From Thursday the team will edge north 112km over the frozen ice pack to the geographical North Pole. Picture: 'Big Adventure'

'The biggest obstacle we might have is drift-ice and we might need to swim in our special hydro costumes at some point. I'm sure we'll make it.' She added: 'All my friends and teachers are very happy for me.'

Alyona revealed she has special plans for when she arrives on top of the world.

She said: 'Because I'm interested in dancing, I want to dance at the very northern point of our planet. We will also play football there, following a tradition.'

Comments (3)

I would love to hear how the trip went. I am thinking of taking my son to Yakutia to celebrate him finishing high school in December 2016. You have a lovely country and I enjoy reading ST online.
Peter, Sydney, Australia
23/05/2015 07:11
1
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Great trip. I wish you and your team good luck and good ice conditions! I remember how in the 1980's a friend from Kiruna (SE) and I wanted to form a team with a Russian and an American to mush around the globe for world peace. Unfortunately, no chance to ever get any permits/visa. Meanwhile, I remember some report, a Russian team did the Russian arctic at least.
Markus, Switzerland
14/05/2015 18:42
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Alyona, give us a wave when you get to the top. PS. And the best of luck to you all in getting there.
Jaker, Dundalk
14/04/2015 23:02
1
0
1

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