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Journey to where Norway meets the North Pole and you’ll find the Svalbard archipelago, home to some of the coolest ski runs and Arctic backdrops in the world! Starting in Longyearbyen, the northernmost permanently inhabited settlement, embark on a week-long ski odyssey under the 24-hour Midnight Sun, during which you’ll tour untouched summits, shred untracked lines, and explore places no one’s ever seen before. From mild cruisers to bone-chilling couloirs, skiers of all skill levels will find a run of their own. And the best part? You won’t have to share the slopes with anyone.

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Adventure highlights

  • Special snow within the Arctic Circle

    Sample the unique mix of Arctic corn and perfect spring powder

  • The Midnight Sun is always there

    With 24 hours of sunlight, you’ll get the most out of your days on the slopes

  • Incredibly remote & silent slopes

    New, untracked areas become accessible as summer progresses and the ice melts

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Itinerary

Enjoy a week of sailing and ski touring under the Midnight Sun! Make your way to Longyearbyen, the world’s northernmost settlement, join a seasoned local guide, and chase the freshest lines on remote and untouched mountains! You will be aboard the Ocean Sherpa sailboat, and you will switch locations almost daily to reach the best snow and get some epic descents. Your guide will adapt the touring to your group’s goals and abilities. All you have to do is enjoy the views and pick the most exciting slope you want to shred!

  • Fly into Svalbard Airport just northwest of Longyearbyen and get transferred to your hotel in town. After you go over the trip logistics, get a good night’s sleep. You’ll need it for the adventure to come!

    A city details of Longyearbyen - the most Northern settlement in the world. Svalbard . Norway.
  • Get settled in the sailboat, your home for the week. Head towards the beautiful Isfjorden, a majestic fjord in Svalbard. You will anchor in Trygghamna, which is where you’ll have your first day of skiing! The bay Trygghamna translates to “safe harbour”, as its calm seas give travelers the opportunity to disembark the boat and explore the wonderful surroundings.

    Accommodation: Ocean Sherpa sailboat
    Meals: Light dinner

    Trygghamna bay
  • With today’s locations being Trygghamna and Ymerbukta, you will have plenty of options to leave your first turns in fresh snow. You will find lots of terrific and exciting terrain options here. Once you return to the boat, you’ll be served a delicious meal before heading towards St. John’s fjord.

    Accommodation: Ocean Sherpa sailboat
    Meals: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner

    Svalbard slopes ideal for skiing
  • Today you’ll wake up in the wonderful St. John’s fjord, an area said to have potential gold hidden! Better go out and search for it, maybe you get lucky.

    Accommodation: Ocean Sherpa sailboat
    Meals: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner

     

    Skier skinning up in Svalbard
  • The destination for these two days is Krossfjorden. You are now 79 degrees north, not far away from Kings Bay and Ny-Ålesund. This is the northernmost place of this tour, so make sure to fully enjoy the moment and take in this once-in-a-lifetime experience!

    Accommodation: Ocean Sherpa sailboat
    Meals: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner

    Sailboat in icy sea
  • This island is also known as the Foreland, as it’s the westernmost island in the Svalbard archipelago. These were most likely the mountains that William Barentz discovered in 1594, and he gave them the name Spitzbergen (due to how pointy they are).

    Accommodation: Ocean Sherpa sailboat
    Meals: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner

    Snowboarder in clouds in Svalbard
  • Isfjorden has countless skiing opportunities, and depending on the weather, your guide will take you to the best spots. Ski your heart out, as this is the last day of skiing!

    Accommodation: Ocean Sherpa sailboat
    Meals: Breakfast, lunch, and dinner

    Isfjorden S
  • After a full week at sea and in remote mountains, it’s time to return to civilization. Disembark the boat, explore the charming Longyearbyen, and catch your flight in the afternoon!

    Meals: Breakfast

    longyearben sing
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Meet your guides

Christoph Hofer
5.00
Christoph Hofer
Originally from the mountains of Austria, Christoph thrives in winter wonderlands and has a passion for skiing and mountaineering. Apart form being an adrenaline junkie, he’s also a mechatronics and industrial engineering student in Innsbruck. One of his favorite locations is Svalbard, where he guides trips but also studies the Arctic risk and safety management—because nothing says “thrilling career path” like navigating polar bear encounters and frostbite prevention! Christoph is not just a terrific guide to have by your side—he’s also an explorer, scholar, and just an overall great person to have around.
Backyard Svalbard
5.00
Backyard Svalbard
Backyard Svalbard was created in 2019 by a team of passionate skiers enthralled by Arctic landscapes. Their certified guides have extensive experience leading ski expeditions beyond the northernmost sections of Norway, and they’ll do their best to provide you with an authentic Svalbard adventure.

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5.00 (6 reviews)
Teresa Cezanne

Ronny and Jonas were great guides with profound knowledge of the enviroment. I felt safe.

Niall Murphy

Amazing week in Svalbard skiing and sailing around the archipelago. The guides were great – excellent knowledge of the area and wild life, managed the different skill levels of the participants well.

Backyard Svalbard backcountry ski trip
Greg S. (source: Tripadvisor)

My favorite part of the experience was getting to know Sigurd, the guide, and hearing about all his local adventures. He did a great job arranging all the details for the trip, making it a safe, fun, and enjoyable day in the backcountry of Svalbard. I would highly recommend Sigurd as a guide and feel like I made a new friend. If you visit, remember the weather changes pretty quickly so leave yourself a day or two of flexibility for unpredictable conditions.

Service-minded and great guiding
Alexander F. (source: Tripadvisor)

Backyard is a great partner during your tour planning, as well at they’ll give you a great tour experience. Their prices are fair and our guide, Loup, was great, both in terms of knowledge and personality. We went for a ski touring trip by snowmobile and had a great trip despite of stormy weather.

Margit R (source: Tripadvisor)

Fantastic tour and organisation with focus on safety first. Our guide Loup and Martin made a great job all days even with the weathercircunstances against us all. My best recomondations!

Charlotta T (source: Tripadvisor)

Great service, timely and professional handling of booking, changes, amendments, payments and refunds at all times, by Erlend and his entire team. Thanks for fantastic top touring and guiding by Niall. Unforgettable for all senses, despite all different weather conditions. We will be back for sure.

Things to know

  • What you get in this adventure:

      • Experienced, certified ski guides with extensive knowledge of the area
      • 8-day sailing & ski touring adventure
      • Sailboat accommodations for the duration of the ski tour
      • Professional sailing crew
      • Standard offshore lifejacket and lifeline
      • Transportation to and from the hotel
      • Shore landings and tours with the dinghy
      • All meals on board, snacks, hot beverages, non-alcoholic beverages
      • Bedding and towels
      • Safety equipment

    What’s not included:

      • Technical backcountry ski touring equipment
      • Transportation to and from Longyearbyen
      • Accommodation prior to and after the tour
      • Alcoholic beverages
      • Meals in Longyearbyen
      • Voice and data communication using onboard equipment
      • Guide gratuities — optional
  • Your home for the week is the Ocean Sherpa, a 34-meter (111-foot) long sturdy steel ship with beautiful woodwork that can accommodate up to 10 guests. There are 6 double guest rooms with an ensuite shower & wash basin in every cabin. You’ll have a professional crew of sailors and guides with you onboard.

    A spacious deck holds an inviting saloon with a bar and a panoramic view, granting you the chance to spot wildlife and enjoy the landscapes. The crow’s nest in the mast and the accessible jib net offer great opportunities for photography.

    The steel, reinforced hull and top stability make Ocean Sherpa a safe ship in all weather conditions, ready for ice operations. The ship is certified and maintained to the highest safety standards—she is under class and complies with Solas and is voluntary operating under ISM.

    Sailboat's saloon in Svalbard

  • To enjoy this backcountry adventure, you need to be in excellent physical shape. You will be on your feet for 7 full days, covering miles of complex Arctic terrain every day. You will need to manage controlled descents in variable conditions. All participants should feel comfortable on challenging blue or black-level resort runs and be able to carry a loaded daypack while skinning up variable degrees of terrain.

    For the enjoyment and safety of everyone involved, participants must be approved to participate in advanced backcountry skiing tours either through a previous trip with the guiding service or through recommendations.

  • In order to join this sailing & skiing tour in Svalbard, you need to be an experienced backcountry skier.

    Don’t worry if you’ve never been sailing before! You’ll have professional guides and crew onboard with you, and they will take care of everything. Still, the sails are easily handled so even unexperienced guests can take an active part in the handling of the ship.

  • For technical backcountry ski touring gear, you will need to bring:

      • Alpine touring skis, telemark skis, or splitboard with skins (can be rented)
      • Touring boots and poles (can be rented)
      • Avalanche safety equipment (can be rented):
        • Digital, 3-antenna avalanche transceiver or beacon
        • Lightweight snow shovel
        • Avalanche probe
        • Harness for glacier travel (for advanced touring)

    For clothing, we recommend bringing:

      • 2 merino wool underwear long-johns
      • 2 merino wool underwear t-shirts
      • Fleece jacket and thin down jacket
      • Wool sweater
      • Big down jacket
      • Shell jacket & shell pants
      • 4 pairs thin merino wool socks & 2 pairs thick wool socks
      • Beanies and buffs
      • 2 pairs of gloves (1 thick, 1 thing) & glove liners
      • Warm mittens
      • Inside shoes for onboard the boat
      • Leisure clothing for the boat

    For personal items, we recommend bringing:

      • Water-resistant duffle bag to pack all your belongings in (90+ liters)
      • Backpack large enough to carry all items listed (around a 30-40L backpack)
      • Helmet
      • Sunglasses and ski goggles
      • Water bottle and 1L of water
      • Sunscreen and lip balm
      • Personal medication
      • Toiletries
      • Blister plasters and sports tape (if you’re prone to blisters or sprains)
      • Camera — optional
  • All mandatory gear can be rented if you don’t have your own. You can rent it with your guides upon request, just let us know when booking!

  • Although there can never be guarantee of sun, May in Svalbard brings relatively good and stable weather. You’ll sail from point to point and go skiing depending on the weather conditions. Your guide will make sure to maximize your skiing time.

    Regarding temperatures, it’s generally around -10°C (14°F) at sea levels with a variability throughout the day. Naturally, the nights are colder and temperature can vary depending on the altitude. Check out our clothing and equipment recommendations. We recommend packing more than you need, because the weather can come in quickly, and a sunny morning can soon become a stormy afternoon.

  • Group sizes and pricing:

      • For this adventure, the max client-to-guide ratio is 5:1.
      • The maximum group size is set at 10 guests.
      • A minimum of 6 participants is required for the tour to run.
      • Cost is per person and it doesn’t decrease as the group grows.

    Min. age requirements:

      • If you are older than 18, you’re good to go.
      • Minors above the age of 16 may be permitted to join private tours on a case-by-case basis.
      • Minors under 16 are not allowed to join this tour.

    If your group has skiers under the age of 18, contact us prior to booking to make arrangements.

  • To get to this ski tour in Svalbard, most people fly into Svalbard Airport near Longyearbyen, the largest city in the archipelago and the starting point of this tour. There are daily flights to Longyearbyen from Oslo, Norway, but we encourage you to book early. Norwegian Air flies from Oslo, while SAS arrives from Stockholm.

    Flying to remote Svalbard takes a while, so plan your journey ahead, and spend a day in town before departure on this tour. Your guide will organize for a minibus to transport you and your gear to your hotel in Longyearbyen.

  • We highly recommend that you cover all your bases with both emergency medical and travel insurance. With medical insurance, if you have an accident or medical emergency on or off the mountain, you’ll avoid paying out of pocket for costly expenses. This covers everything from hospital treatments to emergency air transportation and more.

    Travel insurance covers canceled flights, natural disasters and other scenarios that may interrupt your travel plans.

    We also expect you to respect local regulations and take measures to protect yourselves, your guides, and the communities you’re traveling to.

    If you need assistance selecting the right insurance for your group, let us know and we will be happy to help!

  • Deposits 

    When booking a trip, you can either pay for it in full or reserve your spot with a 50% deposit. The remaining 50% of the trip price is to be paid 120 days prior to departure, at the latest.

    Secure your early bird spot with a 10% deposit! This tour gets sold out very quickly, but with early-bird booking, you will be the first one to know about any new upcoming dates. Pick your preferred dates without the risk of your bucket list adventure selling out!

      • Only 10% of the total amount should be paid as a deposit upon booking. This deposit is non-refundable, but can be transferred to another 57hours adventure anytime in case the dates don’t suit you.
      • Once the dates are set, you can confirm your booking by paying another 20% of the total amount.
      • The final balance is due 3 months (90 days) prior to departure.

    Cancellations

      • Booking fees are non-refundable. 
      • In case of cancellation within 48 hours after booking, the amount paid is fully refundable.
      • For cancellations 120 or more days before the trip, you are eligible for a 50% refund of the trip price.
      • For cancellations 0-119 days before the trip, there is no refund.
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