Friday, November 20, 2015

The 1,100-mile journey should take about 75
days, depending on the weather.
It's currently summer in Antarctica, which means the
temperature is just slightly above freezing, and Henry Worsley is making the
most of the weather.
The 55-year-old British former army officer is marking
the 100th anniversary of Sir Ernest Shackleton's ill-fated journey to the
South Pole by making the trip himself, with one twist—he's doing it
alone.
There will be no dogs, tractors, or food and fuel drops along the
way—and no kites either, which is what helped Norwegian explorer Børge
Ousland on what was the first solo, unsupported crossing of Antarctica.
"I
want the success or failure of this thing entirely in my own hands," Worsley
told National Geographic.
This isn't Worsley's first trek through Antarctica.
He has made somewhat
of career of following in the footsteps of Arctic explorers, first in 2008 to
commemorate the centennial of Shackleton's journey through the
Transantarctic Mountains, which ended less than 100 miles from the South
Pole.
He returned to the icy continent in 2011 to lead a team of six soldiers
along the original routes used by Captain Robert Scott's and Roald
Amundsen's expeditions.
This time, though, he is going it alone, dubbing his trek Shackleton Solo
and chronicling it all on his blog so armchair adventurers can follow
along.
After documenting the extensive prep work involved in such an
undertaking, Worsley's 1,100-mile expedition finally got underway a few days
ago.
Although the first few days of his trek went as well as days spent hiking
across glaciers in subzero temperatures can go, day five of the journey was
"a bit of a stinker," according to his blog, with the weather taking a
turn for the worse.
Hopefully the weather will improve, because Worsley still
has at least 73 days until he reaches his goal.
Worsley didn't undertake this journey just for fun or glory.
He's trying
to raise money for the Endeavor Fund, an off-shoot of the Royal Foundation
established in 2012 by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry.
The
fund offers grants to wounded British servicemen and women to take part in the
sort of physical activities and extreme excursions that Worsley
undertakes.
You can help him reach his $150,000 goal by donating here.
To mark the 100th anniversary of Sir Ernest Shackleton's
journey to the South Pole, former British army officer Henry Worsley is
crossing Antarctica alone.

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