The Last Great Journey
The first round-the-world equestrian expedition. The journey has been split into two segments: Across Eurasia and North America.
Part 1 - Ocean to ocean across Eurasia
A first in history
The historic journey began on the 2nd of October 2021 in the city of Magadan, Russia.
The crossing of Eurasia on horseback has never been completed before. Spanning 15,000km across some of the toughest terrain, the journey is estimated to take 16 months to reach London.
Long Rider Nikita Gretsi will have to face some of the toughest conditions on our planet with winter temperatures dropping below -60°C. He will be surviving in the wild alongside his Yakut horses, who are native to the world's coldest temperatures.
Segments of the journey cross isolated wilderness, with some locations being 200km from the nearest populated settlement. Nikita and his horses will be sharing the wild with apex predators such as brown bears and polar wolves.
Nikita Gretsi is of Russian, Ukrainian, Estonian and Uzbek origin. Having lived in Great Britain from the age of 7, he speaks both Russian and English at a native level.
At 23 years of age, Nikita completed several training expeditions in preparation for "The Last Great Journey". Throughout the last two years Nikita was mentored by some of the most experienced Long Riders as well as indigenous people from the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia), who have provided him the 'tools' needed to accomplish such a challenging mission.
Having only learnt how to ride two years ago, Nikita has now completed the first leg of his journey which saw him ride 1000km in a month through challenging terrain where temperatures dropped to -40C. During this time he survived in the wild, living in a tent, and travelled through the infamous "road of bones".
"The ordinary person is capable of achieving the extraordinary"
Nikita specifically selected his horses which are native to the extreme cold and challenging terrain. This unique breed is called the Sakha horse, also known as Yakut horse. These wild horses spend most of the year searching for food in the vast wilderness and are ridden only for a few months throughout the year. Although technically being referred to as semi-wild, as the horses do get ridden, these unique horses have no dependence on humans for survival and are extremely challenging to ride due to their physical toughness and aggressive character (they bite and kick anything they don't like). But their unique ability to endure extreme climate and terrain, is one of the main reasons Nikita selected this breed for this epic journey.
Nikita's horses, Artyk (Mountain Pass) and Urun (White), are from Sasyr, a rural settlement in the North East of Russia. They're used to roaming mountains, bogs and thick forests their entire lives, covering massive distances whilst fighting off bears, wolves and the extreme cold to survive. The welfare of the horses is of utmost importance and Nikita maintains regular contact with vets to ensure his horses are in good health at all times. The horses are also checked, when possible, by vets to confirm they are in good condition.