The continent of Hastel is a land shrouded in mystery. Mystery and ice. On the surface of it, there is little to attract people to this desolate wasteland. However, as is so often the case with such lands, there are rumours of ancient ruins at the heart of the continent, holding a fortune in treasure for those bold enugh to claim it.
Several expeditions have been launched over the centuries with just such an aim in mind, but Hastel holds its secrets well. Most expeditions have turned back well short of their goal, defeated by adverse conditions. Others never returned, perhaps killed by the elements, perhaps by something else.
People with a more lateral turn of mind have sought out Hastel's ice dragon population and questioned them about the interior of the continent. Although rather vague in places, maps based on their accounts are the most accurate thus far available. On the subject of the ruins, the dragons are rather reticent, saying only that they are the remnants of a former age.
Hastel is a land shaped by ice and wind. It is on the coast that most life is found, from penguins and seals to the dragons. Ultimately, all food comes from the sea, since there are few plants hardy enough to grow in such conditions.
The further inland one goes, the less life is observed. Although there have been accounts of strange creatures normally only seen in the elemental plane of ice. In the main, the land is covered by ever-moving glaciers, with mountains standing above them in some places.
The only intelligent race inhabiting Hastel, so far as people are aware, are the ice dragons. Solitary by nature, the dragons have no organised government, nor do they use currency (though some do maintain hoards). They tend to view the arrival of explorers from other continents with interest and some amusement, certain that they won't be staying long.