Jarle Andhoy – Berserker on Another Illegal Trip to Antarctica

Jarle Andhoy after his failed Antarctic expedition in February, 2011, in which three people died. Photo: AFP

Jarle Andhøy calls himself as a “Wild Viking.”  He has been the subject of the Norwegian television series Berserk mot Nordpolen (“Berserk to the North Pole”), Berserk til Valhall (“Berserk to Valhalla”) and Berserk gjennom Nordvestpassasjen (“Berserk through the Northwest Passage”) which aired on NRK in 2003, 2005 and 2007.   Andhøy is best known for controversial voyages in polar regions usually without permits, or insurance, which have run afoul of the authorities in Norway, Finland, Russia and New Zealand.  He was deported from Canada in 2007. His voyage last year to the Antarctic also got three of his crew killed when his yacht Berserk II sank.

Andhøy appears to be at it again. He has on another illegal voyage to Antarctica and is wanted by the authorities in several countries.

He and 19 year old New Zealander, Samuel Massie, are sailing from New Zealand toward Antarctica in his new 54-foot yacht, Nilaya.  Andhøy told a Norwegian newspaper that he is heading to Antarctica to find out exactly what happened to his three crew and their yacht last year. After being notified by the Norwegian government that Andhøy was attempting another unauthorized voyage, the New Zealand Customs Service undertook a sea and air searches for the yacht.

Andhøy’s yacht has reportedly been spotted in international waters but has not responded to radio hails in repeated fly-bys.  Andhøy has no EPIRB on board and reportedly does not want to be rescued if something goes wrong.

Last February, Jarle Andhøy and Samuel Massie set off from the yacht Berserk II in McMurdo Sound on the Antarctic coast in an attempt to drove ATVs towards the South Pole.  Shortly thereafter, in an Antarctic storm, the EPIRB from the Berserk II was activated.  Following an extensive search by the New Zealand Coast Guard and private ships, the only sign of the yacht or the three crew aboard was debris and an empty life raft.  Andhøy’s ill-fated expedition was mounted without authorization or insurance. He later paid a fine of 25,000 NOK to the Norwegian Polar Institute.

Berserk in international waters

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30 Responses to Jarle Andhoy – Berserker on Another Illegal Trip to Antarctica

  1. Pingback: Vliegende Noor op de Zuidpool | Bootjesgek.nl

  2. Palmer says:

    Andhøy represents a danger to Antarctica now and in the future, not so much because of the fragile ecology down there, but because of the fragile culture.

    The geopolitics of this strange immensity, where no sovereignty exists, are unique and difficult for outsiders to understand.

    An uneasy, teetering accord is all that binds people together in this place where human life can only be sustained at huge effort and expense — the only local resources which are not forbidden are air and ice. Even water requires fuel — quite a lot of fuel.

    Getting a litre of fuel to Antarctica costs the Americans between USD80 and USD130 a gallon, due to their economies of scale. Smaller nations can easily spend over USD200. This simple reality changes everything, because fuel is a 24/7/365 imperative for survival.

    It has always been a problem when yachts have arrived at a base and expected the sort of assistance which would be trivial elsewhere on earth. There simply are not spare resources or manpower for this to be realistic.

    Cooperation is the key to survival, not just in individual cases but at the level of culture. The first thing outsiders need to do is build relationships with the key locals: base leaders, radio operators etc. Everyone needs to know what everyone else is doing, all the time, in case something goes wrong.

    When an alien culture, based on an antagonistic view of authority and an anarchic view of bureacracy, arrives in McMurdo Sound (where private yachts do not go – not because they are forbidden, but because there are NO safe anchorages) and does the exact opposite of relationship building, they are on their own, and this is not good if something goes wrong.

    Something did go wrong, which has put a lot of pressure on Andhøy. He was not there, his communications with his support crew on the yacht were inadequate, and because they had not established good relationships and communications with the locals (on ‘land’ and sea) no-one else can give the answers he seeks. Clearly it’s tearing him apart, and he’s lashing out in increasingly bizarre and embarassingly pubescent ways.

    Mercifully the authorities have not fallen into his trap and fought back, which would only reinforce his ‘cult of personality’ credentials as the courageous champion of colourful individuality, and vindicate his carefully posed victimhood.

    This is a serious test of character, which he has failed, comprehensively, publicly and sadly, as he clearly had extraordinary potential.
    Instead, he has led himself astray with cultural branding issues, trying to commercialise a nostalgia for more anti-social times. His angle? To portray, for the entertainment of the mass market, a group of neo-Vikings / Hells Angels / Rebels without a cause.

    And it seems he has committed the one fatal crime of celebrity: he has ended up buying his own brand. He drank his own Kool-Aid. He of all people should have known that it was laced with cyanide.

  3. Palmer says:

    correction – “a litre of fuel” in my previous comment should read “a gallon …”

  4. Pingback: Berserker Jarle Andhøy in Trouble Again | Old Salt Blog – a virtual port of call for all those who love the sea

  5. Pingback: Norwegian Jarle Andhøy Arrested by Chilean Navy | Old Salt Blog – a virtual port of call for all those who love the sea

  6. kevin says:

    Jarle is treading upon toes going near the Antarctic, Edge of World! Wonder why it is so off limits? The only people who seemingly made in-roads there, were post WW2 Nazi’s!

    The only guarantee that comes from the interference received by Jarle is that it was all “for his own protection”!

  7. Rick Spilman says:

    Jarle is a reckless narcissist who has gotten people killed.

  8. Glen says:

    It’s interesting that they wouldn’t just let the man traverse the antarctic. Hidden agenda? People die all the time so don’t act like you care Rick Spilman about people you didn’t even know. Not only that but it’s not his funny business but the idea that it’s illegal for anyone to just go there, and don’t give me it’s because it’s just “not safe” for “man or environment” Palmer – it’s apparent that you’re using straw men to justify the stranglehold on land and resource and knowledge we have in the 21st century.

  9. Rick Spilman says:

    Don’t lecture me about caring about life. You obviously do not care. I happen to. And spare me your ignorance of Antarctica.

  10. Russell Coleman says:

    Why not let people go?? What is being hidden and why is it so off limits?? Why are so many scientists who go under officially sanctioned events end up sick,dead or declared insane? Those who do make it back are then not allowed to interact with the public. Let the man go and leave him alone. There is nothing so fragile on this earth that a few men and a boat will irrevocably damage. I don’t wan’t to hear any of the climate change BS. That died about no science and 3 scandals ago!

  11. Rick Spilman says:

    Close to 30,000 people visit Antarctica every year. So claiming that the region is “hidden” or “off-limits” is ridiculous. And “leave him alone”? When Jarle Andhoy made it to Antarctica he was wildly unprepared, needed to be rescued and got two of his crew killed. And frankly if you call climate change BS, you are only publicizing your own ignorance.

  12. Jeremiah says:

    Jarle has the right to go anywhere he wants. Governments and their border bullshit is ridiculous. Governments have been responsible for destroying our earth and yet they are going to criminalize Jarle for wanting the Truth! Sounds like they are hiding something!

  13. Rick Spilman says:

    Tell that to Jarle’s dead crew. No one has the right to be irresponsible and dangerous.

  14. Ben says:

    Come on now, do you really think that his crew didn’t know what they are getting into and that there is a likely chance that they are not going to come back? Seriously, they are grown men and should be allowed to make their own decisions.

    I agree with Jeremiah on this, “Governments and their border bullshit”, it shouldn’t be up to a Government to decide where you can and cannot go on this earth. They aren’t God, they haven’t created it nor do they own it. So if anyone decides to go on a journey on their own so be it, let them, if they die they die, if not they might actually have an interesting story to tell!

    I would love to go myself because i wanna know what’s really going on out there, too much mystery, too much off limits and way too many stories about it…”Neu-Schwabenland” much?

  15. Rick Spilman says:

    Fools bumbling around the globe tend to put not only their lives at risk but also the lives of those who must go out and rescue him. If Andhoy had not been rescued from the ice when he got his three crew killed, we would not be having this conversation. Reckless bullshit and bravado are best left on the bar stool.

  16. ian says:

    there’s more land past Antarctica !! check out ‘this crazy notion- the flat earth revolution’ on youtube the guy will break it all down for you guy knows what he saying always leaves you thinking, guy is a total trip lol

  17. Alex Man says:

    More evidence that the earth is not what they tell us! STOP PAYING YOUR TAXES TO GOVERNMENT LIARS! Quit your job! and make your own WATER FROM AIR! see the videos on Water From Air! Peace!

  18. ian says:


  19. Walter Gensburg says:

    Pretty hard to paint it any other way. All these individuals pushing the issue about public safety are ‘throwing the handkerchief over the wound’. Public safety is being violated every day in these nations, so reactions like these classically coincides with protecting bigger (cooperate) interests.
    The having an incredibly delicate Eco-system which indeed it does, which leaves the question what exactly is being done in this Eco-system that is being kept from the public eye, and of course as Palmer pointed out these facilities are clearly using Energy systems that are dangerous to the current ‘economic-structure’?
    Lastly a fragile Geo-political environment means seems to say these labs well all go to war if some neo-viking joins the very uncomfortable party, or there food supplies well vanish, these notions seem ridiculous as well.
    I hope this mans brave and valiant actions inspire more explores to boldly go to these areas.

  20. Rick Spilman says:

    The “brave and valiant actions” got two of his crew killed and he and his comrade required rescue. I would all his action reckless and stupid, based on the body count alone.

  21. Walter Gensburg says:

    Hey Rick, his crew knew the risks involved , they weren’t children. Accidents happen and yes, it did seem reckless, as acts of bravado generally exhume.
    It goes without saying that your kinda of missing the larger picture here.
    Perhaps you have a ‘mind your own business’ world-view. Some men have a hunger for exploration and knowledge, and are willing to take venture out for the rest of us. Playing it safe isn’t always the smartest route believe it or not.

  22. Rick Spilman says:

    Give me a break, Walter. I just don’t happen to like reckless and stupid. Not very complicated.

  23. Walter Gensburg says:

    Either way you look at it, this region needs more ‘honest’ exploration done by ‘real’ and brave men, i like to look at these men having given there lives to this cause.

  24. red pill says:

    Get real, a treaty between every developed nation on this planet over a land mass uninhabited,rumored to be replete with natural resources goes for decades uninterupted by the very world powers making profit from WAR and destruction daily, causing the lives of millions of people, destroying natural habitats around the world and expanding their governance over humanity like a corporate buisness model day by day happens to inexplicabaly “care” so much about a cold “waste land” that they all come togther to “protect” it from us? The same governments who destabalize, dehumanize an eradicate any nation they set their tyranical, imperial greedy hands on by way of a constant cycle of war and military campaigns on humanity, constantly drone striking and bombing the poor masses of humans they “care” soooo much about MIRACUOUSLY UNITE to keep the “fragile” integrity of a frozen, baren waste land maintained…because they are the ultimate conservationist OMNI moral authority that CARE so much about maintaining the purity of “snow ice and fickle blizzards” that they’ll go to great lengths to work together to keep the riff raff out?
    an entire region only granted access to those who already adhere to their payroll…..government scientist, government researchers and military personel….”30’000 visitors a year” LOL! how many people visit disney world a year in a floridian city oppose to a REAL mysterious land mass they need to be authorize to visit? every “1ST” WORLD Government has come together to”protect” ice (which is the cover story since their true colors outside of the artic is QUITE hostile to everything else) they’ve found something, something GREATER than the “greatness” they’ve condition the masses to believe of them and what they, the governments believe gf themselves and they want the masses to remain ignorant of it….”30’000″ people go a year. I BET most of them aren’t run of the mill tourist, they’re only allowed to skirt a few miles inland. government officals go where they’ll make your life a living hell if you dare cross the warning signs threatning to prosecute, inprison and fine you for you curiosty. they hiding something and have been studying it.

  25. Rick Spilman says:

    More hysterical ranting I see. Seems pretty typical of Andhoy admirers.

  26. 187 says:

    the earth is flat he would have found the firmament, thats why they sank him

  27. Eagle says:

    The worlds largest telescope is in the Antarctic and it’s pointing down, it’s a mega detector called “Ice Cube” it’s 8,000 ft. beneath the Arctic ice.

  28. keith says:

    there’s a good chance the earth is flat… mostly all ancient cultures and religions attest to this… Antarctica is the edge in the geocentric model… nasa is bunch of bullshit that needs to be shattered into a million pieces.

  29. Jalla says:

    I think people should watch his TV-series and see for themselves. He is a free soul who does not believe that the Government of Norway should have to give approval before travelling in international waters and towards the south pole.

    Most Norwegians, who have seen his TV series and understand his language, have a high opinion of him. He makes fools of ridiculous law enforcement agencies, which is fun. And he really loves the oceans and the life at sea.

    Also, many people like that he is always in contact with local people and culture wherever he goes. He has done some truly amazing trips, regardless the accident. (Of which he van hardly be help responsible in my view).

  30. ww says:

    You westerners are lucky to enjoy the freedom that you have to go anywhere. South Korea passed a law back in 2008 that criminalizes people for visiting Antarctica. Any South Korean who are found to have crossed 60S latitude will be imprisoned for 3 years and fined $27,000.