This summer PolarQuest’s Expedition Leader Adam Rheborg will spend his twentieth summer in Svalbard. We asked him how come.
– I never tire, Adam says. Svalbard is one of few places on earth where you are off the grid from the outside world. The landscape’s open spaces and giant glacier walls, the wildlife on land and in the sea, the midnight sun and the intriguing history of polar explorers is simply unique.
Adam’s life as an expedition leader is the result of dedication and hard work. As a young backpacker he was looking for a job that would combine his interest in biology with his urge to explore the world. Travels in the USA, Japan, and Australia as well as a job as a dive instructor in Thailand eventually inspired him to look further south – towards Antarctica.
The magic polar world
– I read everything I could find about Antarctica. One day a friend called, offering me a temporary job as an assistant guide on the ship M/S Stockholm in Svalbard. I wasn’t sure what he was talking about. Svalbard? I imagined a rocky island with some ice on top. But I said yes. Once there I fell in love. With Svalbard, that is. And I realized that taking care of and showing people who are curious about the Polar regions is what I am meant to do.
Since that first summer in Svalbard in 1998, Adam has led a countless number of trips for PolarQuest around the world – including Antarctica.
– Every trip is different. The guests are nature lovers who don’t mind muddy boots, just like me.
The guide’s golden rule
Twenty years of guiding have given Adam insights that he is happy to share, like “the guide’s golden rule”.
– It’s about always, always picturing yourself in the situation of the guest. And all guests are different. You must keep asking yourself how you would like to be treated under a certain circumstance. You need to be humble too. If you ever stop wanting to improve what you’re doing it’s time to quit.
Below, please find a selection of images from Adam's many Svalbard expeditions!