What does the Hvitserk name represent? Where does it come from? Read more about who we are here.
Hvitserk is a name in Norway that carries a multitude of concepts within its name: adventure, expedition, travel, culture, and exploration.
“Hvitserk” is the name of the Vikings on Greenland's highest mountain. When the Vikings sailed from Iceland to the South-Western Coast of Greenland in the 10th century, the 3,693 meter high mountain on the East Coast of Greenland was an important landmark. After leaving Iceland, they did not land until the white, snowy mountain emerged as a "lighthouse" in the distance. The Vikings, establishing a Norse settlement on Greenland, named the mountain Hvitserk, or “White Jersey”, due to its importance as a reference point for navigation between Iceland and Greenland. Today, the mountain Hvitserk is commonly called Gunnbjørnsfjell, named after Gunnbjørn Ulvsson, the discoverer of Greenland. Not only is this mountain the highest mountain of Greenland, but it is the world’s highest mountain North of the Arctic Circle. Of the few who have climbed this massive peak, the mountain was first officially ascended in August, 1935 by a team of climbers: Augustine Courtauld, Jack Longland, Ebbe Munck, Harold G. Wagner and Lawrence Wager.
The year before the expedition organization Hvitserk was established, several of the company's entrepreneurs were following the footsteps of their ancient Viking ancestors, journeying across the ocean by sailboat to reach Greenland’s coast, and ski across the glacial landscape. Like Mount Hvitserk 1,000 years ago represented a "lighthouse" for the explorers who went Westward, Hvitserk the company would be a "lighthouse" for people with adventure and expedition blood in their veins.
Hvitserk has a long history of entrepreneurial minds, explorer’s passion and a deep desire to share experiences with other travelers. Over the last 40 years, the company has shifted, grown and combined forces to create what we have today.
Ulf Prytz started adventure travel in Norway in the 70's, as the first Norwegian "adventure" operator. Beginning in Kilimanjaro, Ulf specialized in creating a base in Kenya, and bringing Norwegians to Africa to explore high mountains and distant cultures. Unique trips off the beaten track and a great respect for local culture and nature were important core values for the company. Hvitserk quickly became nationally recognized as the leading organization of Adventure Travel in Norway. Hvitserk carries within its name, the power of curiosity, inner and external journeys, and the voice of connecting with nature for everyone.
One decade ago, these passionate explorers taking to all corners of the world, turned their sights to their own homeland: Norway. This beautiful, dramatic and pristine country was a place to be respected and explored by its own people. In 2017 Hvitserk of Norway was officially founded. Today, we bring people from all over the world to explore what Norway’s nature has to offer. Steep mountain peaks, crystal clear fjords, untouched ecosystems and arctic wildlife make Norway a place to be explored by travelers from around the globe. Our deepest value is to show people our beautiful country, nature, and experience the Norwegian culture.
Today, Hvitserk of Norway continues to grow. Currently, Hvitserk of Norway has 6 employees and approximately 30 highly qualified tour and expedition leaders. Here you can read about our guides, and here you can read about our employees based in Oslo. By traveling with Hvitserk of Norway, you are embarking on an adventure that encourages you to explore with wonder, learn about your environment, and experience Norwegian nature with your fellow travelers with a sense of awe and curiosity.