Next month, one man will set off from Bellingham, Washington, on an incredibly ambitious journey: 7000 miles across the Arctic, propelled solely by his own power, using his feet, a paddle, and a fatbike. And he’s documenting it for the rest of us mere mortals.
What’s fatbikerafting, you may be wondering? It’s a hybrid of fatbiking (using a fatbike, or a mountain bike outfitted with enormous tires (4.5 inches wide!), which will enable Badenoch to pedal through just about anything – snow, mud, or sand), combined with a packraft, a single person raft which can be packed down to the size of an average 2-man tent, and one which can be loaded with the fatbike and the rest of the gear in order to cross the wetter portions of the route.
The Fatbikerafting the Arctic expedition is Andrew Badenoch’s latest adventure, one which not only coined a new term, but also one which is sure to turn armchair adventurers green with envy. The route he’s chosen will begin and end in Bellingham, and in between will be reaching the Arctic Ocean and circumnavigating Alaska, using his feet and a fatbike for the portions over land, and a pack raft for the watery ones.
One of the most ambitious parts to the expedition is that Badenoch won’t burn any fossil fuels for either transportation or for cooking. According to his site, 77Zero, it’s partly because of his awareness of the dirtiness of our current fossil fuel economy (“A clean planet is better for everyone”), and partly to demonstrate the feasibility of human and nature powered transport through wilderness, as opposed to how most of us choose to travel.
Badenoch’s project was just fully funded via a Kickstarter campaign, raising over $10,000 in order to turn his adventure into a documentary, as well as bankrolling some really important gear, like a satellite communicator for sending out updates, memory cards for his camera, and a solar charger and bicycle hub generator for powering his devices.
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