Frederik Paulsen's first great adventure involved taking the reins, at age thirty, of the Ferring pharmaceutical firm founded by his father.
After he had transformed the company into a multinational corporation, Paulsen began to recall his childhood dream of discovering unknown lands, sparked by the Viking tales of his native Sweden.
He therefore set off to explore realms of ice and snow.In the spring of 2000, he stood at the North Pole - only to discover that the planet had several other extreme poles: the wandering magnetic pole, to which every compass points; the somewhat more stable geomagnetic pole; and the 'pole of inaccessibility'.
Since the earth has two hemispheres, these four northern poles have their southern counterparts in the Antarctic.
Paulsen therefore set himself the challenge of being the first person to reach all eight poles.Charlie Buffet and Thierry Meyer recount Paulsen's thirteen-year adventure in freezing, hostile regions that were once the site of historic exploits and are now a laboratory for scientists trying to decipher our planet's future.
The foreword is by Ellen MacArthur