Legendary arctic explorer and educator Will Steger and his team have embarked on a four-month, 1,200 mile dogsled trip through Canada's Baffin Island wearing SOLE Custom Footbeds in their traditional, Inuit moose-hide mukluk boots to keep their feet warm and supported. The Global Warming 101 Expedition is using daily web journals, photography, video and audio feeds to capture the profound effects that global warming is having on the people and ecosystems in the Arctic environment.
In December 2006, John Stetson, Global Warming 101 Expedition manager and team member contacted SOLE with a request to send footbeds for testing. â€œWill Steger, myself and others have been putting this expedition together for two years and now the start is near,â€ stated Stetson. â€œI really hope that SOLE Footbeds can answer the tricky foot problems that we have struggled with for years.â€
After a month of intensive training, including several 30-mile-a-day hikes, the crew found SOLE to be the answer to nagging foot problems. The solution lies in the fact that SOLE Footbeds are heat-moldable and therefore conform to the foot as well as the footwear. This meant SOLE could provide a proper fit and adequate support inside the team's unusually shaped, soft-soled mukluks.
The Global Warming 101 Expedition is using the Ed Viesturs Signature Edition SOLE Footbeds in its mukluks. The Ed Viesturs model includes 3.2 millimeters of SOFTEC Cushioning for extra comfort, an anti-microbial, moisture wicking X-StaticÂ® top sheet and a heat moldable orthopedic shape that provides excellent support and a custom fit.
Renowned mountaineer Ed Viesturs will be joining the expedition team on the last leg of the journey from late April to May 2007, along with British entrepreneur and environmentalist Sir Richard Branson and his son Sam Branson.
The 1,200-mile expedition began on February 14 in the southwestern region of Baffin Island and will conclude in May on the island's northwestern region. Four Inuit dog teams are carrying the team over glaciers, ice caps and across the sea ice to reach some of the most remote Inuit villages of the world.
Each day, the team is posting video, images, sounds and text to the www.globalwarming101.com website, and communicating with online participants around the world. Students and teachers will integrate the educational curriculum components developed by the team into their coursework, and will participate in the expedition through research and forum discussions.
In a quest to find an effective and affordable solution to relieve his chronic back pain, British Columbia entrepreneur Mike Baker launched SOLE Custom Footbeds in 2001. SOLE Footbeds use a simple, do-it-yourself heat molding process to create a customized, supportive fit in any shoe with a removable factory insole. SOLE packages all its products with Ecopac, a nature-based plastic that is derived from annually renewable resources such as corn. REI, EMS, Red Wing Shoes and thousands of specialty retailers around the world carry SOLE Custom Footbeds. The company employs over 30 people with offices in Vancouver, British Colombia, Calgary, Alberta and Great Falls, Montana. For more information on SOLE, go to www.yoursole.com or call 866-235-SOLE.
About Will Steger
Expedition Leader, educator, polar explorer, photographer, writer and lecturer, Will
Steger has become a voice calling for understanding and the preservation of the Arctic.
Steger has led the most significant feats in dogsled exploration:
â€¢ The first confirmed dogsled journey to the North Pole without re-supply (1986)
â€¢ The 1,600-mile south-north traverse of Greenland - the longest unsupported dogsled
expedition in history (1988)
â€¢ The historic 3,471-mile International Trans-Antarctica Expedition - the first dogsled
traverse of Antarctica (1989-90)
â€¢ The International Arctic Project - the first and only dogsled traverse of the Arctic Oceanfrom Russia to Ellesmere Island in Canada (1995)
â€¢ Arctic Transect Expedition Leader (2004)
Steger has received numerous honors and recognitions for his work in exploration and
education, including the Explorers Club Finne Ronne Memorial Award (1997), National
Geographic Society's First Explorer-In-Residence (1996) and National Geographic
Society's John Oliver La Gorce Medal for "accomplishments in geographic exploration,
in the sciences, and for public service to advance international understanding" (1995).
He joins Amelia Earhart, Robert Peary, Roald Amundsen and Jacques Cousteau in
receiving this prestigious award. Steger has been invited twice to testify before Congress on polar and environmental issues. In addition Steger received the Lindbergh Award in 2006 for â€œnumerous polar expeditions, deep understanding of the environment andefforts to raise current environmental threats, especially climate change.â€ He founded the Global Center of Environmental Education at Hamline University in 1991, the World School for Adventure Learning at the University of St. Thomas in 1993, and the Will Steger Foundation in 2006. Steger is the author of four books: â€œOver the Top of the World,â€ â€œCrossing Antarctica,â€ â€œNorth to the Pole and Saving the Earthâ€.
About Steger's Global Warming 101 Expedition
The Global Warming 101 Expedition will travel 1,200 miles across the Canadian Arctic's Baffin Island to experience and document how the Inuit culture is coping with global warming. The Inuit voice is a warning to the world about the devastating impacts of a changing climate. Global warming is not occurring in isolation; the face of the Inuit is a distant yet clear reflection of our future and their personal stories are a voice for humankind. Visiting remote Inuit villages, the expedition will document their stories using text, video, images and regular website updates, reaching learners around the world. For more information, visit www.globalwarming101.com.