Characterising Your Trip

Using keywords, labels and descriptions

Using Keywords, Labels and Descriptions to Characterise your Journey

PECS promotes accurate characterisation of polar journeys by offering a lexicon that combines both traditional and progressive terminology. Labels use Keywords to portray a brief snapshot of a journey while a Description expands on any information that cannot be captured by the Label.

A Label portrays a snapshot of a journey eg. Unsupported North Pole Doglsed Expedition. It is the most commonly used and widely distributed information extract, the briefest title used to characterise a trip.


Labels are made up of Keywords and are the terms we are most familiar with when characterising a polar journey - Expedition, Solo, Greenland, Unsupported etc

Both the absence and presence of a keyword imparts information. For example, the label DOGSLED EXPEDITION TO THE NORTH POLE provides half of the information, the other half is embedded between the words. This label doesn't use the keyword 'Solo' therefore 'Team' is implied. Likewise it omits 'Unsupported' so we know it to be a 'Supported' journey. And it doesn't include 'Full' so we recognise the crossing started within 50km of a shoreline. If this journey included all of those qualifiers then it would be labelled a FULL UNSUPPORTED SOLO SKI CROSSING OF THE ARCTIC OCEAN.

Example 1:

Example 2:

Other examples:

A Solo South Pole Ski Expedition (is not Unsupported and not a Full or Inland Expedition)

A Full Dogsled Crossing of Antarctica (is a Team and not Unsupported)

A Solo Unsupported Ski Circumnavigation of Lake Baikal (is not a Partial Circumnavigation)

A Full Unsupported Antarctic Snowkite Loop (is a Team and not a Full Loop)


A Description is a detailed narrative of the journey that includes any information not contained in the Label, such as team size, gender, nationality, location, start and end locations, trip distance, trip duration, type of support used, if the trip was guided, whether it was held over multiple legs, expeditions or detached seasons and whether it has any historical significance.

A Description should also introduce any specific sub-disciplines and include a map with intended or completed route.

An example of a good description for SKI CROSSING OF ANTARCTICA could be, Adventurers Isabelle Da Rosa (48) from Italy and Robert Castella (43) from Spain will ski 1452km over 75 days from Hercules Inlet to the Ross Ice Shelf via the Reedy Glacier, collecting a resupply at South Pole.

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