From ice to fire – crossing an arctic plateau to raise funds for the Australian Bushfire Crisis

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On 4th March this year, I will begin a 17-day, 200km skiing expedition across the Arctic. And, while I freeze. Australia has been ravaged by fire. 

The trip will see me cross Finnmark Plateau in Norway, an area often used for polar training. I will be joining an expedition of women, camping every night in the snow, and pulling a 50 kg pulk behind me with everything I need. Temperatures will be as cold as -40 degrees, and it will be the hardest thing I have ever done in my life. Oh, and I’ve never skied before. 

Although I have had the trip booked for a while, the irony (and guilt) is that I will be in the Arctic whilst the country I love has a long road to recovery from the fires it has endured. That’s why I’d at least like to try to turn this expedition from a personal self-gratifying challenge, into one that can hopefully do some good. 

I’m seriously questioning whether I can complete this – but knowing that every unsteady step could help rebuild the places I love will keep me going more than anything else could.


Many of the places that have been destroyed are places that mean a lot to me. Places where I’ve hiked for miles into the wilderness, where I’ve slept under the stars with the fly off, where I’ve watched the sun set over the once-lush Aussie bushland. 

I won’t go into the details. You’ve all seen the news. You know the extent of damage these bushfires are having on wildlife, landscapes, and communities. 

The widespread international support during this crisis has been one of the only good things that have come out of this ongoing tragedy. The support has been overwhelming. 

But, while the fires still burn, we need to start planning for the future, not just managing the present. We need to find ways to save endangered species and to regenerate the bushland so it can become the haven it was before.

That’s why I have chosen to support the WWF who is focusing its efforts on wildlife response, habitat restoration, and future proofing the country. 


  • Wildlife response – including partnering with wildlife response organisations, communities and scientists nationally for a swift and effective response and recovery at scale.
  • Habitat restoration for people and nature – including restoring forests and damaged wildlife habitat, stopping deforestation, including cultivating habitat connectivity, core habitat and Indigenous and rural fire management.
  • Future proofing Australia – including driving innovative solutions to help mitigate climate change, driving climate preparedness, species adaptation and long-term wildlife and nature conservation efforts towards securing Australia’s natural resources for people and nature.

Donate to support this important cause.

By Brooke Nolan

Brooke Nolan

Written by: Brooke Nolan
Published: February 10, 2020

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