On 18th December 2012 Richard set off to ski solo, unassisted and unsupported from Hercules Inlet on the Geographical coastline of Antarctica to the Geographic South Pole.
Richard’s route to the South Pole would be approximately 1,200km/745 miles.
After skiing 974.68km/605 miles in some of the most hostile conditions on the planet, Richard was forced to end his expedition on Day 39, having run out of time.
THE SOLO SOUTH POLE EXPEDITION
This R&D expedition will be Richard’s third expedition of the year in preparation for his next world first project.
Richard Parks’ latest expedition is to ski solo, unassisted and unsupported from Hercules Inlet on the Geographical coastline of Antarctica to the Geographic South Pole.
Hercules Inlet is one of the recognised start points for South Pole expeditions on the Geographical coastline of Antarctica.
Richard’s route to the South Pole will be approximately 1,200km/745 miles. The expedition will be solo, unassisted and unsupported which means he will have to perform and survive in some of the most hostile conditions on the globe on his own, pulling everything he needs with no food drops or external support.
Richard will be man hauling a pulk (sled) containing all his gear which will weigh between 70 and 85 Kilos/11-13 stone and he will be burning up to 6,000 – 8,000 calories a day.
Richard hopes to complete the journey within 35-40 days, although with safety contingencies and travel plans considered, the expedition will be around 7 weeks long.
Richard’s South Pole expedition will form a crucial part of the research and development for his next world first project, known currently as Project X, which he has earmarked for 2014. Project X remains top secret for the time being until Richard announces his next pioneering challenge.
This is Richard’s third R&D expedition this year. First off he returned to Aconcagua, the highest peak in South America before tackling North America’s brutal Denali for the third time in what proved to be very difficult conditions and a perfect testing environment. The expedition to the South Pole will be a further step towards Project X.
“This expedition is the culmination of many months of research and development with my sponsors and suppliers and I am really excited to test these systems in a cold and hostile environment. Antarctica touched me deeply during the first leg of my 737 Challenge and has never left me, I feel very grateful and privileged to be able to go back. It was an incredible moment for me to stand on the South Pole and to have the opportunity to return again is really exciting.”
“The nature of travelling safely alone in this environment means my focus will be on efficiency. It’s not a race, breaking records on this expedition is not my priority, my focus is getting there and getting back safely and enjoying the expedition….if I possibly can!”
1/ The first humans to reach the Geographic South Pole were Norwegian Roald Amundsen and his party on December 14, 1911, shortly followed by Captain Robert Falcon Scott and his British team on January 17, 1912.
2/ At 14.0 million sq km (5.4 million sq miles) Antarctica is the fifth-largest continent in area after Asia, Africa, North America and South America. Antarctica is nearly twice the size of Australia. About 98% of Antarctica is covered by ice that averages at least 1 mile (1.6 km) in thickness. Antarctica is considered a desert, with annual precipitation of only 200 mm (8 inches) along the coast and far less inland.
3/ Currently the fastest time to ski from Hercules Inlet to the South Pole, solo, unassisted and unsupported was recorded by Norwegian Christian Eide who completed the journey in an incredible 24 days, 1 hour, 13 minutes. Eide’s expedition to the South Pole began on December 20, 2010 during the same period Richard was also travelling to the South Pole during his 737 Challenge.
4/ The polar ice sheet is moving at a rate of roughly 10 metres per year in a direction between 37° and 40° west of grid north, down towards the Weddell Sea. Each year on New Years Day the Geographic South Pole marker is repositioned to compensate for the movement of the ice.
5/ The Geographical South Pole has an altitude of 2,835m/9,300ft.
For expedition press enquiries please contact:
Tracy Pinder: firstname.lastname@example.org
Tel: +44 (0)7760 165 165