Greenland vs Antarctic and Svalbard

I've received a few emails asking where I prefer paddling, what the difference is etc.

Short answer: East Greenland for cold water paddling.

Let me try to explain why and how using London as a starting point for three stunning locations - Greenland's East Coast, Svalbard and the Antarctic.

1. Ease of access.
East Coast - you can don your paddle gear later on day one. Many alternative - and interesting - round trips will bring you back to Kulusuk in 1-4 weeks.
Total travel time 3 hrs to Keflavik, 1hr transit to Reykjavik and 2 hrs to Kulusuk.
Total cost for transport around DKK 4000.
No administration papers, permits or such.

Paddling on Greenland's East Coast
Svalbard - a short flight to Oslo before the onward flight to LYB. When there, you still need to overnight before either a flight to Ny Alesund or a boat charter to where ever your starting point is - and you are limited to the West Coast. Norway is the administrative power at Svalbard, under the Svalbard treaty, and they have rules when others use common sense.
Total travel time: 1 day plus Svalbard travel (one way trip)
Total cost approx. DKK 6000 plus Svalbard costs.

Paddling at Svalbard
Antarctic - you will most likely fly to Buenos Aires, on to Ushuaia and an overnight here. Now, sailing across the Drake Passage, continue south along the peninsula, before you are somewhere you can paddle - and camp - with permission.
Cost: More than justifiable not to mention the long flights and the Drake.
(Did I mention that you will also travel your route in reverse going home?)

Paddling in Antarctica

2. Paddling Conditions and Dangers.
East Coast - about 2000 km coastline to choose from, with varied mountain territory, lots of pack ice and ice bergs, mostly stable good weather. You'll be unlucky to run into a polar bear. Most of the 2000 km's are wilderness where you are on your own, no support boat needed and if you are on your own, you run your own schedule.

Svalbard - Small area open to expeditions with other groups crossing your path regularly, not to mention cruise ships. Police will pop by to check your papers. Weather is unstable but OK. Polar bears and walruses a real concern. You'll need to stick to a set schedule for your permit and your pick up transport.

Antarctic - Stunning snow and ice country, but very limited where you can go. Weather very unstable. Leopard seals a real concern. You will probably be limited to short paddles near your support boat. Oh, and the cruise ships share your route too.

3. Paper work
Greenland - none needed, no restrictions (outside the National Park north of Scoresbysund).
Svalbard - you need to apply and be approved for a permit, easy but formal if restrictive.
Antarctic - you need to apply and be approved for a permit, not easy and restrictive.

4. Paddling value for a three week duration.
Greenland - Expect 19 days + two for flights.
Svalbard - Expect 12 days + a week for boat service + 2 for flights
Antarctic - Three weeks is too short for the Antarctic, needing minimum 16 days for boat + 4 days flying.

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