A third-year student of the Faculty of Social Sciences and Mass Communications, Artem Volnov, from August 5 to 27, visited an incredible expedition to the Arctic, to Franz Josef Land, reaching the extreme northern point of the Russian Federation – Cape Fligely. And he was there with the flag of our University!

The expedition took place within the framework of the Citizen science program, a program based on the cooperation of professionals and amateurs united by common interests. The research results become available to the whole society, and not to a limited number of specialists. The team performed the following tasks:

·         counted populations of different bird species;

·         conducted observations of marine mammals;

·         assessed the vegetation state and soil cover;

·         estimated the amount of anthropogenic garbage.

Artyom did not undergo any special training for the expedition - this was the first such experience. However, he also did various hiking trips to Karelia, the Kola Peninsula, the Urals – Artem has been leading an active tourist and hiking life since he was 10 years old.

After seeing one of the issues of the Finansist journal, which told about the ascent of the Expedition Club team to Elbrus in 2018 in honor of the 100th alma mater’s anniversary as part of the project “Russia from Edge to Edge”, Artem thought that he could continue the tradition and raise the FinU flag at the extreme northern point of the Russian Federation – Cape Fligely.

The expedition started in Murmansk and took place on a special, prepared sailing yacht “Alter Ego”,  with a FinU flag on the mast.

It took the team members 5 days to get to the Franz Josef Land archipelago. It was a rather difficult path – constant pitching, watches, gray sky and endless water surface for 5 days in a row.

“On the way to the archipelago, a cyclone overtook us and it was forbidden to go to the cockpit without insurance and a life jacket, as there was a high chance of falling overboard. Having overcome these trials, we arrived at Franz Josef Land, where we were greeted by beautiful weather and blue sky,” recalls Artem.

The expedition team explored the archipelago for 12 days. We visited the northernmost point – Cape Fligely, crossed the 82nd parallel, where the FinU flag was unfurled.

Artem paved the way to the northern point for the Expedition Club, which plans such an expedition.

Recall that the project of the FinU Expedition Club “Russia from Edge to Edge” started with climbing the highest point of Russia and Europe – Mount Elbrus in 2018 in honor of the 100th anniversary of alma mater. The aim of the project is to be the first among Russian universities to present the FinU at all extreme geographical, as well as the highest and deepest points of the Russian Federation.

In addition to Elbrus, some of the Expedition Club teams  made expeditions to Lake Baikal, the Baltic Spit in the Kaliningrad region – the extreme western point, Mount Ragdan in the Republic of Dagestan – the extreme southern point. A short film was shot in each of the locations, as well as meetings with applicants were held.

The project has acquired a truly federal scale: the victory at the XVI All-Russian competition “My Country is My Russia”, the implementation of a grant in the amount of 4.8 million rubles as part of the victory at the All-Russian competition of youth projects of Rosmolodezh, the stories’ release on federal television (TVC TV channel), in large print and electronic media (Rambler.ru , Regnum and others).

However, due to the socio-economic situation in 2020-2021 caused by the pandemic of a new coronavirus infection, the Project was temporarily suspended.

Artyom’s participation in the expedition to Franz Josef Land will serve as a trigger for the continuation of the Project “Russia from Edge to Edge”. The following locations are the extreme eastern point of the Russian Federation – Cape Dezhnev in the Chukotka Autonomous Okrug and the extreme northern point. We don’t know yet how and when we will reach this extreme point, but it will be done. The project is ongoing and will be implemented!