Svalbard – avalanche safety at civilization’s edge

 ( Photo: Holt Hancock )

Fly with us to this post-conference excursion in the remote High Arctic at 78 degrees north, on the outermost periphery of the civilized world. Expect an insightful excursion in Longyearbyen to explore the community’s robust response to snow avalanche risk management. On this excursion you will witness firsthand the diverse risk management measures employed by the community since the devastating avalanches of 2015 and 2017. You will explore an array of recently-implemented structural and organizational solutions implemented in recent years which include snow fences, supporting structures, catching dams, and structural slush flow defenses in addition to daily site-specific warnings.  

As we approach the completion of the 30 million Euro investment in the construction of structural defenses in the fall 2024, this tour offers a unique opportunity to investigate the avalanche risk management process – from hazard mapping to finalization of long-term structural defense – in a location where the Arctic’s dramatic climatic changes have presented challenges to traditional risk management strategies. 

There will be a hike in mountainous terrain up to 450 m a.s.l one of the days, so you need to be fit, wear proper shoes, and bring warm clothing. 

Sunday 29 September – Wednesday 2 October
Alternative 1: Radisson Blue Hotel

  • 9.500,- NOK (incl. meals and internal transport) 

Alternative 2: UNIS Bed and Breakfast 

  • 7.800,- NOK (inkl. meals and internal transport) 

Max. participants: 30 
NB: If you want to join this excursion, we highly recommend signing up as early as possible. Note that all participants must book their own flights. These flights should be booked as early as possible as soon as you have a confirmation on the excursion. On Sunday 29th there are two alternatives from Tromsø to Longyearbyen; DY 396 at 10:30 with Norwegian and SK 4414 at 12:10 with SAS. If you leave from Svalbard on Wednesday 2nd, there are  also two alternatives from Longyearbyen to the mainland; SK 4491 at 12:45 with SAS (directly to Oslo) and DY 397 at 14:40 with Norwegian (to Tromsø with transit to Oslo).