As far as is known, only Dmitry and Matvey Shparo could cross the Bering Strait on ice until now, and this trip took almost three weeks... So, many wonder, can you drive from Alaska to Russia?

Expedition "ski bridge"

For the first time in the history, the Bering Strait was crossed on the ice.

The Strait, having a minimum width of 80 kilometers, in the winter locked with scrap, broken ice. Mash of the ice of different thicknesses resembles a swamp. Spaces of open water appeared suddenly, they are quickly locked with the 30-degree cold, on which you cannot swim in the boat and skiing. All that we call the ice conditionally due to currents and winds, unpredictable moves. With the southerly wind velocity of the ice in the Strait reaches 7-8 km / h. Only polar bears are feeling comfortable and confident and always roam about the ice floes in February-March. How much did Russia sell Alaska for?

After three unsuccessful attempts in previous years, Dmitry and Matvey Shparo started on 1 March in 1998 at 11.45 at the Chukchi time near the village Whalen.

Cargo of travelers at the start as follows: Matthew carried the sled weighing 90 kilo, Dmitry carried a backpack weighing 45 kilos. The products were taken for 12 days. Furthermore, each of the base groups (Chukotka and Alaska) had a supply of food for 10 days, which could be delivered by airplane or helicopter to the routing group.

The first 5 days skiers fought northwestward drift and were demolished in the north at 50 km compared to the starting point. To the east, in the right direction, they were able to go skiing only 8 km. On the seventh day they crossed the border between Russia and Alaska. On the same day the travelers decided to save the products strictly. Every next day they ate only half of the planned ration.

Russia - Alaska - bridge: feasible?

Weather conditions during the trip were: the temperature from -26 to +2 degrees °C, wind up to 20 m/s, it was raining the last two days, three days were sunny. The ice in the Strait is extremely destroyed, so the speed skiers rarely exceed 1 km / h. The participants tried to go in the daytime and in the early days they went skiing 9, and in the last – 11 hours a day.

Four times during the trip the travelers overcame many kilometers of space of thin ice in the field of the broken section of currents. On the third day elder brother fell knee-deep in the water, in the middle of the trip they drowned one ski, and by 15 days of the trip the two travelers were in the water, and Dmitry Shparo with his backpack.

The expedition met daily the owner of the Arctic - polar bears - in the first week of the trip,. One of such meetings, it would cost the travelers their lives. Huge bear came into camp, when travelers were sleeping, and tore the tent. Shots from a gun forced him to leave.

On March 21 at 15.45, having more than 300 km, Dmitry and Matvey Shparo successfully finished in the abandoned village Chariot in Alaska.

In summer you can swim in the kayak, but because of the strong currents it is not so easy.

Read the article: "How far is Alaska from Russia: - Illegal immigrants".


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