33 Years After A Mission To The North Pole Failed, A Long-lost Journal Revealed The Explorers’ Fate

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Image: Tekniska museet
Image: Tekniska museet

Trudging across an uninhabited island in the Arctic Circle, a couple of seal hunters make a macabre discovery: the remains of three people. Alongside them lay the deceased’s sparse belongings and the remnants of a camp. It didn’t take the hunters long to realize that they had found a long-lost team of explorers.

Image: Christopher Michel
Image: Christopher Michel

Believe it or not, as late as the 1890s, the center of the Arctic was somewhere that, despite numerous attempts, no one had ever reached. Back then, many an adventurer wanted to be the first to stand at the top of the world. Attempts to successfully navigate to the North Pole, though, had generally been taken by dog-pulled sled or through icy waters on a boat. And every single one failed.

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Image: Durand-Brager
Image: Durand-Brager

Many expeditions failed due to the area’s crushing ice floes or came undone in berg-filled seas. Some were stuck on the ice for many months they were rescued; some never made it back. Searching for the North Pole, then, was a dangerous business.

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