Last year, a team of adventurers became the first people to ski the remote Onekaton Island. When they were flying home from that historic North Pacific expedition, they passed over the highest mountain in Eastern Siberia.
To normal people, this flight pattern would mean nothing more than some stunning views of beautiful, untouched mountains. However, Matthias "Hauni" Haunholder and Matthias Mayr aren't exactly normal folks. They realized that the adventure of a lifetime was lying in the mountains below.
Fast-forward one year and the group headed out into the wild toward Gora Pobeda in an attempt to become the first people to ski the highest peak in this remote region. As the saying goes, it's not about the destination, it's about the journey. And this trip, which was captured for the Red Bull TV documentary "The White Maze," was a journey none of them will ever forget.
Check out the images below to get a sense of just how epic this adventure really was.
Yep, it was that cold
We all know water freezes at 32 degrees Fahrenheit, but what happens when it's -76 degrees? In Siberia, it means that boiling water instantly turns into powder. It's obviously very cold, but also very dry. But when the stars align, it creates a unique result.
It’s all in the name
How do you sum up an adventure for the history books in just a few words? It was quite the task for the mountaineers once they got back from the expedition. But after reviewing the footage, one thing became apparent — the impressive landscape looked exactly like an incredible white maze. The place practically named itself.
Really, really out there
The mountain is located 200 miles from the nearest town and 800 miles from the nearest hospital. Once you comprehend those distances, the difficulty of the mission becomes that much clearer.
When the road melts
In the middle of Siberia, proper roads are few and far between. Therefore it's vital to have proper, sturdy transportation. Enter the coolest van ever. The van helped Haunholder and Mayr traverse hundreds of miles over frozen rivers. The only downside was that the rivers, and thus the roads, began to melt as the seasons changed from freezing winter to hot summer.
With a little help from your friends
There's always a key element to a project's success. And for "The White Maze," it was a family of nomads who lived near the mountain. Their knowledge of the area, and support, was imperative to the success of the team.
These stories and more come to life in The White Maze on Red Bull TV on Nov. 18. Tune in to learn more about this epic adventure and just how cold it really was.