»In transporting the camera equipment, Condor was tasked with handling all the customs formalities – the perfect chance to put the Condor team’s know-how of complex transport to good use.«

Karin Mödlhammer, Condor Salzburg, Austria

How to turn East Siberia’s tallest peak into a hit film.

The White Maze.

Freeriders Matthias „Hauni“ Haunholder and Matthias Mayr accomplished something no one else ever succeeded in doing before: They skied the highest peak of East Siberia, the Gora Pobeda. The film documentary about this pioneering feat celebrates its premiere on October 12, 2016. Title: The White Maze. Haunholder and Mayr spent more than a year planning their ascent of the Gora Pobeda. The logistics posed a major challenge. Transporting the camera equipment gave Condor the perfect chance to put their know-how of complex transport to good use. Condor was tasked with handling all the customs formalities. The camera crew Johannes Aitzetmüller and Moritz Sonntag as well as photographer Jonas Blum were in charge of capturing the adventure on film. The documentary “The White Maze” plays out in a total of 52 minutes. The Gora Pobeda is part of the Chersky Mountain Range, which spans over 1,200km making it larger than the Alps. Because it is so far out of reach, the Gora Pobeda is considered extremely difficult to ascend. Its north face is covered by steep, icy slopes that pitch 60-degrees, while the terrain on the south face is both steep and rocky; the temperature on the mountain is roughly -50C. The nearest helicopter station is located 1300 km away; the nearest accessible road, more than 350km away.

The logistical challenge: Film equipment with ATA Carnet roundtrip to Siberia and back

You would think that the import and export of the film equipment would be carried out without a great deal of difficulty. Perhaps just a matter of filling out a three-page customs form; the original plus two copies. Well, think again, because the reality of it looked a lot different! For the ATA Carnet 81 parts and 68 kg of camera equipment had to be accounted for in some 49 different spaces on the form, in both German and in Russian. What’s more, everything had to be individually weighed, tariffed and photographed in advance. The final customs document totaled 91(!) pages, of which 11 pages were a picture catalogue. The processing in Moscow took place under extreme time constraints; a Condor employee awaited the athletes at the airport, helping them rush through all the customs formalities in order to run and catch their connection to Yakutsk in time. They made it! And thanks to our expertise, the return transport went just as smoothly. It was a great pleasure to have been able to contribute something – even if very small – to such a great Project!

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