10. January 2011
Dear friends, partners and fellow mountain folk
As per usual you can choose to endure through my annual new years rant, but I promise it will be full of fun news and exciting things to come. First of all I would like to thank you all for an
amazing 2010, a year so full of great trips with awesome people that your inbox would most likely crash if I were to go into details. But a quick run through is in order since 2010 was a year to
remember for so many good things. I would also like to take the opportunity to introduce you to some of the exciting adventures we have planed for 2011, a year that promises to be just as fun filled
as the passing one.
2010 started with a cold snap here in Iceland, and thankfully our friend and fellow guide Chris Geisler was here to enjoy numerous ice climbing first ascents and some exciting winter adventures. It was a great ice climbing season, cut only short by the fact that the skiing was even better....Early winter was powder filled and those that braved the short arctic days were well rewarded. March was spent in the Alps, were usual suspects such as the Berner Oberland, Haute Route and Chamonix were well visited. Following our Alpine tour, the ski season on the Troll Peninsula started with a bang, literally as the first volcanic eruption of two this spring, started. The first eruption was all cute and cuddly and people flocked to Iceland to watch a live volcano and ski some first descents on the Troll Peninsula. The season was the biggest yet for Arctic Heli Skiing as well as our ski touring programs, BUT than the second volcano (Eyjafjallajökull) burst into action. Now this one was rather far from being cute at all, and as all air traffic in the northern hemisphere got shut down for weeks on end, Iceland went from being a fun exciting destination to being not so fun and way to exciting of a destination.
But although some of our groups were stuck on both sides of the Atlantic and others in Iceland there were bright sides to this upheaval, such as the fact that for a week or two all international flights were landing in Akureyri, 45 min from our lodge and guests were on their skis an hour after arriving. One of our biggest achievements in terms of getting the good word out there was the filming of our new Arctic Heli Skiing promo video. A Swedish team of skiers, photographers and cameramen led by Fredrik Ericsson enjoyed 10 days of filming on the Troll Peninsula and we are extremely happy with the results which you, if you have not seen it yet, can check out by clicking on this link. 2010 was dedicated to images in every way and we had the pleasure of having some of the best ski photographers in the world visit us and capture the magic of the Troll Peninsula. A good picture surely says more than a thousand words so if you would like to see millions of ''words'' you should check out our Best of 2010 Gallery, but be forewarned, you might just have to come check out the goods after viewing.
As usual our ski touring programs on theTroll Peninsula and the sail boat ski touring in the Glacier fjords were our busiest posts but we made sure to go on our annual exploration trip, where we scout new terrain and possibilities for awesome new ski touring adventures. This year we explored the north coast of the Hidden Land, using a two masted oak schooner as base camp and climbed and skied some of the best terrain that we have seen in Iceland, and it was all first descents.....We now call this trip Ski to the Sea and its already one of our best sellers for the coming season. The last day of the ski touring season was June 15th and it was time to head back over the big sea to Europe where we were based all summer. This time around we decide to do it Viking style and took the ferry to the mainland (only 4 days at sea....) and toured Europe with our Icelandic Super Jeep which turned many a head with its big tires and AHS Logos. Now the fact that Icelandic cars do not have any AC was lost on me before departing my beloved island but 14.000km later in Europe's warmest summer in centuries, that fact became quite ''interesting'' to say the least. Now did I mention the 2 and 4 year old's in the back seat....
But all jokes aside, we had a fantastic summer in the Alp's and climbed many a peak with our guests from all over the world. Great times with good people. But 2010 will also be remembered for some big steps in building up our infrastructure, as we put up our own communications network on the Troll Peninsula, opened up our gear rental, did lot's of work on the lodge and started the construction of our ''Spa'' where guests will be enjoying Sauna, massage and some hot tub action in the coming season.
2011 is now upon us and the list of exciting adventures ahead is to long to recite in detail, but as usual our Ski touring and Heli Ski programs will be going full bore, with some exciting new destinations in Iceland, Japan, Turkey and even Crete of all places...We will also be offering expeditions to some the high peaks around the world and spending the summer in the Alps. So if you are hungry for an adventure you should not hesitate to get right back to us since we are already getting fully booked for the peak seasons.
A good way to stay updated with what we are up to is to join our fast growing Facebook sites, where we have one for Bergmenn Mountain Guides and another one for Arctic Heli Skiing, become fans and we will pummel you with exciting adventures and news, or simply go ''old school'' and email :-) or phone and we will get you set up with exactly what the doctor ordered.
Finally I would like to thank all of you that joined us this year for great days in the hills and memories that will live for a long time. Thanks to you, we get to live our passion of working in the mountains all year.
Cheers and all the best from Iceland, and hope to see you in the mountains in 2011