1999 Crossing to the Geographic North Pole

  • Start date: March 1, 1999
  • End date: May 5, 1999
  • Start / end point: Artichesky Cape (Siberia) – Geographical North Pole
  • Total km: 1,000 km
  • Expedition duration: 66 days
  • Challenges achieved: First Spanish team arrival at the Geographical North Pole


In 1999, Ramón Larramendi joined as part of the television program team “Al filo de lo imposible” (TVE) as a camera and polar expert. The objective was to carry out the first Spanish expedition to the Geographical North Pole, beginning from Siberia (Russia). Members of the Army Mountain Team also participated in the geographical adventure.


The expedition departed from the Siberian coast of Semernaya Zamla on March 1 of that year, always aiming the compass at 90º north, where the Pole is located. The team comprised by Larramendi, Curro Ban, Benito Molina and Javier Barba, each with his own pulka-sled, dragging about 100 kilos of cargo. On the long journey through the ice desert, they progressed about eight or nine hours daily, in which, on some days they advanced 25 km while on others only 7, according to the difficulties of the terrain.

For the following days, as they advanced with a high sun in the horizon, they increased the pace, until on April 27 the expeditionary, who had been joined by Curro Soria and Antonio Pérez Grueso (also the TVE’S program camera), reached the Geographical North Pole, after having walked in 60 days about 1,000 km and having withstood temperatures between -30º and -50ºC.

The arrival took place at 7.15 am. For the first time, the Spanish flag wavered at the North Pole. From there, they approached the old Russian mobile base of Borneo, set up during the Cold War. After a few days of rest, they returned to Spain, after passing through the logistics base of Khatanga, in Siberia.

During this expedition Larramendi began to mentally design what would eventually become the eco- polar vehicle WindSled.


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