Undiscovered Worlds with Steve Backshall – Arctic Part 2

Undiscovered Worlds with Steve Backshall - Arctic Part 2

Undiscovered Worlds with Steve Backshall – Arctic Part 2 – Embarking on a daring expedition to the far reaches of unexplored corners on our planet, the intrepid explorer, Steve Backshall, fearlessly ventures into the heart of Greenland’s Arctic wilderness. In this ambitious quest, he sets his sights on conquering an unconquered mountain that stands tall and proud, hidden deep within the icy expanse.



As Steve and his devoted team navigate through this untamed terrain, they encounter an array of formidable challenges that test their physical and mental limits. They must conquer treacherous rivers of freezing meltwater, cautiously avoid the treacherous clutches of quicksand lurking beneath the icy surface, and contend with the unpredictable dangers of glacial ice. It is an awe-inspiring and nerve-wracking journey, fraught with excitement and uncertainty at every turn.



However, beneath the sheer adrenaline of the expedition, a poignant reality emerges. The Arctic, known for its icy majesty and untouched splendor, is facing an unprecedented crisis. Rapidly warming at an alarming rate, it now experiences a staggering two-fold increase in temperature compared to the rest of the planet. This climatic upheaval is taking its toll on Greenland’s magnificent ice sheet, once an ancient testament to nature’s grandeur, now melting at an alarming rate.

With its ice sheet, towering over two kilometers thick in certain areas, gradually succumbing to the relentless forces of climate change, an entire habitat that has stood for millennia now hangs in a precarious balance, teetering on the brink of oblivion. Steve and his team bear witness to this heartbreaking reality as they tread upon the melting ice, realizing that the very landscape they explore is living on borrowed time.

As they ascend the unclimbed mountain’s formidable slopes, their journey is not merely an audacious conquest but also a race against time to document and preserve the ancient wonders of this unique habitat. The pressing urgency to understand, protect, and raise awareness about the plight of the Arctic ecosystem propels Steve and his team to new heights of dedication and determination.

In the face of this ecological crisis, the significance of their expedition takes on a profound meaning. Through their remarkable expedition and unparalleled courage, they aim to ignite a spark of awareness, inspiring the world to take action and unite in safeguarding the fragile wonders of our planet’s most remote and delicate realms.

In the end, as Steve Backshall and his team stand triumphantly atop the unexplored mountain, their hearts are filled not only with the joy of conquest but also with an unwavering commitment to preserving the Arctic’s precious heritage. Their adventure is now etched not just in the annals of exploration but also in the quest for a sustainable future, where the ancient habitats of our world can thrive, flourish, and endure for generations yet to come.


Undiscovered Worlds with Steve Backshall – Arctic Part 2 – Exploring the Undiscovered Wilderness of Greenland’s Melting Arctic

Joining Steve Backshall’s Expedition into the Unknown

The call of the wild beckons the brave and adventurous. While the modern world has mapped much of the Earth’s surface, there remain undiscovered places concealed in rugged wilderness. Intrepid explorer Steve Backshall has made it his life’s mission to unveil these hidden gems. His latest expedition brought him to the frigid lands of Greenland’s Arctic in search of an unclimbed mountain peak buried deep in the icy interior. Like modern day pioneers, Steve and his team ventured into the unknown, facing ice, snow and many unseen dangers. Their goal – to summit this unnamed peak and gaze out over a landscape rarely witnessed by human eyes. The melting Arctic ice sheet has unveiled terrain unseen for millennia, but also brings new risks and challenges. Steve’s climb offers a glimpse into this disappearing world before the onslaught of climate change. Join us as we follow in his footsteps, braving treacherous conditions but rewarded with majestic views and priceless discoveries in one of Earth’s last untouched wildernesses.

Traversing Glacial Rivers and Fields of Ice

Glaciers may appear as frozen and unchanging ancient beasts, but they are actually dynamic rivers of ice, slowly flowing and shifting over time. As Greenland’s climate warms, the increased melting feeds countless streams that gush from the ice sheet. Steve’s early efforts are slowed by these raging rivers of frigid meltwater. Frigid water saps body heat in minutes, making falls into hidden holes potentially deadly. The team must carefully pick their way across, probing ahead with poles and ropes for stability. One misstep could lead to a frigid plunge or dangerous hypothermia. Steve has honed his expertise in cold weather survival, but still treads with care on the uneven frozen terrain.

Beyond the rivers lay fields of rubble and blocks of ice deposited by the glacier’s flow. Bitter winds whip across this icy desert, threatening to freeze exposed skin in minutes. Finding a safe path is arduous, requiring occasional climbs over unstable boulders or massive bergs. Steve relies on every ounce of his experience exploring Earth’s extremes, guiding his team forward through tenacity and care. Their destination awaits atop the ice sheet, but only through perseverance and teamwork will they pass this first trial.

Navigating a Labyrinth of Crevasses

Rising out of the rubble lay the lip of Greenland’s massive ice cap, deceptively smooth and rounded from a distance. Drawing near, a maze of crevasses slicing deep into the ice are revealed. Formed by the glacier’s movement, these fissures pose a lethal threat to climbers. Snow bridges that form over crevasses may collapse underfoot, dropping hapless victims into dark, frigid depths. Finding a safe path requires probing ahead and carefully distributing body weight. One misstep could crack through and entomb a climber in an icy sarcophagus.

Steve’s skill and composure keeps the team moving ahead through this labyrinth. His calm directives steer them safely across snow bridges, carefully avoiding plunge steps and thin ice. Years of experience give him an almost sixth sense for finding stable footing on the glacier’s surface. Steve’s mastery ensures the expedition can continue upwards, rather than meeting an early demise in the depths. Up close the ice sheet resembles a frozen tidal wave, warped and sculpted by centuries of slow but inexorable movement. It dwarfs the climbers in its alien beauty.

Quicksand and Crevasses – Dangers of the Glacier’s Surface

Atop the icy heights, wind scoured surfaces create fields of hardened snow on the glacier called “Firn”. Trudging through firn is arduous, each step sinking calf deep into its grip. Far worse are fields of fine blown snow resembling sand. This quicksand yields readily, swallowing legs up to the knee before firming up. Exhausting labor is required to cross even short distances. A single step too far to the side could land a climber down a hidden crevasse lurking beneath the snow’s surface.

These hazards grow as the team ascends into higher, windier elevations. Steve probes their path forward with poles, testing each step’s firmness. Smooth expanses of wind blown snow hide insidious traps underneath, much like the rivers and rubble fields below. Moving roped together and carefully spreading their weight allows passage through this new maze. Morale stays high but the summit still lies far above. Forward progress is measured in inches rather than miles. The mountain’s peak taunts the weary team floating above. But Steve’s experience warns that rushing ahead could spell disaster on this unpredictable frosty terrain.

A Summit Rewarded with Majestic Vistas

After days of grueling upward progress, Steve and his team finally crest the windswept ridge and gaze upon the peak. A final slope of rock and ice is all that bars their way to the summit. The valley behind them falls away, revealing endless white ice fields bisected by the blue cracks of crevasses. The world below is laid bare, devoid of any visible life in this frigid zone. Steve and his team steel themselves and launch up the final stretch.

Moments later upon reaching the pinnacle, they erupt into exhilarated cheers. Only native Arctic wildlife have likely stood in this exact spot through the centuries. The team triumphantly embraces, basking in joy and accomplishment. But the summit also unveils new miles of mountains and valleys ripe for exploration. Their journey has offered merely a glimpse into Greenland’s truly undiscovered wilderness. Perhaps base camps and climbers may populate these landscapes decades hence. But for now, the team relishes the unspoiled view.

Looking outward, the blue and white ice sheet extends unbroken to the horizon. Massive floating bergs stand frozen in the sea beyond. Steve describes the humbling power of untamed nature surrounding them. These frigid realms still hold secrets yet to be revealed by intrepid explorers. But gleaming meltwater rivers also cut through the ice below, promising impending changes. Their summit may stand solid for years or tumble into the sea as the melt accelerates. This unclimbed peak is rewarding beyond measure, but also highlights the transient nature of Greenland’s ice sheet. Steve and his team absorb the panorama, capturing photos and memories before the long journey home. They’ve stepped briefly into an ancient landscape, but one living on borrowed time as the Arctic melts.

Rappelling into Crevasses – Exploring a Disappearing Realm

Having stood atop the icy realm, Steve now seeks to explore its depths. The melting surface reveals plunging crevasses and caves carved by past centuries of ice movement. The team rigs ropes and begins their descent into the glacial underworld. Blue walls of dense ice surround them, glowing with an otherworldly azure shade. The simply beauty is interrupted by booming sounds that echo through the caverns.

Massive blocks of ice regularly calve off as meltwater seeps deep inside the glacier. The echoing crashes serve as a reminder of the unstable, temporary nature of the team’s frozen refuge. Steve’s crew probes ahead into narrowing passages, squeezing through tight gaps. Further ahead the floor drops away into an abyss of unknown depth. A waterfall cascades into it, fed by the increasing melt. Steve is humbled by both the beauty and fragility of these disappearing features. This underbelly may vanish in coming summers as melt rates accelerate. The team’s photos and accounts of this ethereal realm preserve its memory before the ongoing changes overtake it.

The Expedition Emerges Changed by the Journey

Weeks later upon returning to civilization, Steve and his team reflect on their harrowing journey. The raw natural beauty and unrelenting challenges left an indelible mark on each member. They endured both moments of sheer exhilaration and suffering on the brink of collapse. Cut off from the modern world, each relied on their own skills and the bonds of teamwork. In sharing this profound experience, the group is now bound by fellowship.

The uncertain future of Greenland’s icy landscapes weighs heavy on Steve’s mind. Their expedition captured merely a snapshot before the topography is erased. But the team’s courage and perseverance serves as inspiration. If we summon the willpower, humanity may also surmount the challenges of climate change ahead. The obstacles at times appeared insurmountable, just as the crises of our warming Earth. But Steve’s crew overcame each barrier through grit, compassion and faith in themselves and their companions. Those same qualities now must guide our stewardship of these precious environments. The team glimpsed paradise, but now the heavy work begins to preserve it.


Steve Backshall’s harrowing expedition into Greenland’s frigid interior offered an enthralling glimpse into one of Earth’s last untouched wildernesses. The team overcame icy hazards and perilous terrain to summit an unclimbed peak deep in the Arctic. Their journey revealed majestic vistas and rare insights into a disappearing frozen realm. But the melting ice sheet points to an uncertain future for Greenland’s ancient habitats. As the Arctic warms at unprecedented rates, these landscapes are living on borrowed time. Steve’s climb serves as inspiration to intelligently safeguard our threatened environments. With human courage, compassion and willpower, we can rise to meet the monumental challenges ahead. Our planet still harbors hidden gems that kindle our pioneering spirit. But it falls upon all of us to traverse the treacherous path towards sustainability, before these undiscovered worlds are lost.

Frequently Asked Questions

What dangers did Steve Backshall’s team face climbing in Greenland?

Steve and his team faced many hazards climbing in Greenland including crossing freezing rivers, navigating fields of rubble and ice blocks, traversing snow bridges over deep crevasses, sinking into quicksand-like snow, and climbing steep rock and ice slopes. The harsh Arctic conditions posed threats like hypothermia, frostbite, hidden cracks in the ice, and sudden shifts in the glacier surface.

What resources did the team use to explore the crevasses?

To safely rappel deep inside the glacial crevasses and ice caves, Steve’s team used ropes, harnesses, crampons, and ice axes to descend into the glowing blue fissures carved within the ancient ice sheet. They took photos and videos to document these otherworldly, but disappearing realms.

How did reaching the summit impact Steve’s team?

Reaching the windswept summit after days of hardship built strong bonds of fellowship and trust between Steve and his team. They relied on each other’s skills to overcome daunting obstacles together. The immense beauty and fragility of Greenland’s ice sheet inspired a sense of humility and urgency around climate change.

How is climate change impacting Greenland’s Arctic region?

Greenland’s Arctic is warming at over twice the global average rate. The rising temperatures have caused unprecedented melting across its ice sheet, exposing new landscapes underneath but also creating hazards like destabilized terrain and concealed glacial rivers. Unique environments like surface crevasses are at risk of vanishing as the melt accelerates.

What lessons from the expedition can help address climate change?

Steve reflected that the perseverance, compassion, and willpower needed during the climb are also key to overcoming monumental issues like climate change. Their expedition fostered hope that through shared effort we can work to protect fragile environments under existential threats.

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