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Author: Emily-Jane Brain


“Riding the ice is what counts.” Sjaak said. “That’s where the tyres have to do their job. For the front we chose the cross three pattern. This pattern has slightly smaller knobs, but will react a little less more positively on the asphalt.” For the rear tyre, Sjaak has chosen a cross one pattern with 16mm knobs and three-centimetre long studs to help him grip on the ice. And he’ll certainly need it in order to tow the aluminium framed sled that will be his shelter out on the sea ice, and the means by which he will transport 24 jerrycans, each holding 10 litres of fuel.

In addition to organising his tyres and fuel, Sjaak has extended the front forks and the swing arm to allow enough room for the huge 21-inch tyres. He has chosen Lexan, a light-weight plastic with high impact strength, for the skin of the sled and as he has arranged transport of his sled and bike to Alaska. “But there is still an awful lot to do,” he said. “Each time when I can remove an item from my list, somewhere else a new one appears.”

We hope he gets everything done in time for his departure from Barrow. From here he will cross the sea ice, heading towards Deadhorse. His plan is to work his way down to Whitehorse and from there he will follow the legendary Alaskan highway to its starting point in Dawson Creek. He will travel through Canada and cross the USA border at Montana before finally aiming towards Key West. You can find out more about Sjaak, his past adventures and follow his progress on the Polar Ice Ride on the website R1goesExtreme.