An expedition to the South Pole led by one of Norway’s most famous adventurers, Børge Ousland, continued in an Oslo court this week, after Russian members of the trek sued Ousland claiming delays, deficient equipment and bad food.
Financier Igor Grisjkov and his assistant Victor Bobok are demanding compensation after taking part in the expedition last winter that was supposed to reach the South Pole by December 14 2011, to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the arrival of Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen. They planned to trek in Amundsen’s footsteps with Ousland and his fellow polar trekkers Christian Eide and Lars Ebbesen.
Bad weather caused delays for many of the expeditions at the time, and the Russians wanted to take a shorter route. Conflicts arose after that, reported news bureau NTB, with the Russians claiming they didn’t get the guiding they paid for, that the food they were served was bad and even spoiled, and that the equipment used was substandard. “I didn’t get the services I had paid for and there was also a lack of safety,” Grisjkov told NTB.
Ousland said there were several disagreements and that the case could have been resolved outside court. “This case is meaningless and sad,” Ousland said. “We helped Girsjkov reach the South Pole after he chose to leave the group. This is more about personal conflicts.”