skip to primary navigation skip to content

Q & A

Q & A

Nice weather for sledging

How cold will it be?

Temperatures in Arctic Norway at this time of year vary between -1 degrees to -35 degrees depending on the wind chill factor. Weather is similar to mountain conditions and can change rapidly from bright warm sunshine to dense driving blizzard.

However the Norwegians have a saying 'there is no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothing'.

How fit do I have to be?

You need to be walking fit and with enough stamina to walk at least 15 miles a day for two days. If you are a large frame or overweight you will find it harder going up steep hills as you will have to help the dogs by getting off and pushing the sledge. The fitter you are, the better the experience.

What will I wear whilst sledging?

You will be provided with a very snug and protective all-in-one arctic suit with hood and lots of pockets; arctic boots which are very warm and outer gauntlet gloves.

Under the suit, you will wear a full set of thermals plus fleece or woollen top if necessary, thick walking socks, warm inner gloves, balaclava, ski goggles and warm hat.

What is the accommodation like?

You will be staying in a combination of mountain lodges, bunkhouses/cabins and in Long Drop Loo one case a private summer house. They are all warm, cosy and snug though very basic. In most places there is no running water or electricity so candle power is used and water collected from frozen lakes and streams.

What about toilet facilities

This is a favourite question, especially from women! All accommodation has one or two long drop loos. These are usually in wooden huts a few yards away from the main cabin. They are not pleasant but, at freezing temperatures, not very smelly! You get used to them. If you are actually sledging and want to spend a penny, then you just have to overcome your inhibitions and go beside your sledge. Remember to stop it first and make sure the ice anchor is firmly in the ground. There are devices on the market – Uriwell or She-wee which are supposed to make it easier for women but frankly it is better to just squat and get on with it. No one will watch you!

What is the food like and are special diets catered for?


The food for the evening is mainly pre-cooked and vacuum packed by the Norwegian guide, consisting of pasta with meat or cheese sauce, potatoes, salmon and vegetables. Breakfast is porridge and there is always bread, jam, cheese, ham and plenty of tea and coffee. There is no problem with any special diet as long as notice is given at the time of booking.

What are the dogs like? I have heard that they are very aggressive.

The dogs! Well everyone wants to bring one of their dogs back with them. The dogs are wonderful. They are friendly and willing and love to run. If you bond with your dogs - and most of us do - they will feel like your best friends. Bonding with the dog Unlike pure bred huskies, these Sledge dogs are mixed with many breeds to allow those different qualities to shine through. So they have stamina, strength and are also very amicable.

How will the money I have raised be put to good use?

It will used to provide support for the Institute's activities, in particular supporting the internationally renowned library, museum and archives. Look around the rest of the website and you will see the significant and interesting work SPRI does. It is a World Centre of Excellence for the Polar Regions and its archives are vital for research into global warming and climate change.