A South Korean team arrived in Russia’s Far Eastern Chukhotka province on Thursday, February 16 to ski across the Bering Strait to the US state Alaska, regional officials said in a statement, according to RIA Novosti reported.
The waterway separating Asia and North America, though only 86 kilometres wide, has in modern times been crossed on skis once before, in 1998 by a pair of Russian adventurers.
The Bering Strait is normally frozen during winter months but sections of sea ice can thaw without warning. The South Koreans hope to make the crossing in four days, a statement from the Chukhotka province governor’s office said.
The skiers were waiting for clear weather in the village Provideniya, some 6,400 kilometres east of the Russian capital Moscow, and would fly to the eastern end of the Asian continent to begin their trek in coming days.
The support team would remain in Russia, the statement said.
Severe weather, mountainous ice floes, drifting sea ice carrying skiers far from their intended path and roaming polar bears are among the problems the team will face, M&C reported citing DPA.