Human Journey

From Our Archives: Men Against the Ice

By Melissa Sagen

Listen to the introduction to Bjorn O. Staib’s lecture on his expedition to the North Pole and view some of their hardships traversing the Arctic.

Besides the goal of reaching the North Pole, the expedition had scientific objectives.

Organizations in Norway and U.S. asked for reports on ice formations, temperatures, communication issues, and the effect of polar conditions on bodies, minds, and performance. The expedition failed to reach the North Pole, but the members reached the farthest North on foot since Peary.

Bjorn answers the question, why challenge the Arctic Ocean on foot? His response, “it is man’s restless urge to go and see for himself.”

For more information, please read, “North Toward the Pole on Skis” by Bjorn O. Staib (NGM February, 1965)

Melissa Sagen is a Film Specialist in the Film and Audiovisual Archive and has worked with the Archive since 2016. The Film and Audiovisual Archive dates back to 1901 and houses 770,000 hours of viewing material. Highlights include Louis Leakey and William Beebe, Dian Fossey and Jane Goodall.

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