Ben of the Antarctic?

Ben Saunders, and some ice. Brrrrr.

A short while back I spoke to Ben Saunders, who's aiming to become the first person to recreate Scott of the Antarctic's epic journey to the South Pole and back - an 1,800-mile round trip.

On foot.

Is he mad? No actually, quite sane. In fact adventurous would be a better word to use to describe him. Ben himself told me there's something awesome about the immense scale of the polar regions, and that going there and being the only human in about a bazillion square miles of snow and ice is an incredible feeling.

Why? It's the spirit of a challenge, the essence of an adventure, the being outdoors and testing one's own physical capabilities – not to mention mental fortitude – that make it addictive.

To quote Ben, it's "the juice that we can suck out of our hours and days".

Hasn't this been done before? Well, no as it happens. Ben and his team-mate Tarka will be the first to try to recreate Robert Falcon Scott's ill-fated Terra Nova expedition of 1910-1913.

Scott, as you may know, was President of our Club at the time, and his death on the ice in 1913 came while he was still in office. Until now, the journey has never been repeated.

Ben and Tarka will set off from Scott's Hut on the Ross Ice Shelf, ascending on to the Antarctic plateau for a staggering four month journey to and from the South Pole. Ben leaves the UK in October to begin this enormous challenge.

Naturally, the Club wishes him all the best. You can read more about his preparations and thoughts on the journey in our October magazine.

For now have a look at scottexpedition.com where you can find out more about Ben's monumental undertaking.





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Stuart Kidman
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Stuart Kidman

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Stuart Kidman is the magazine's Deputy Editor. He has been a journalist for ten years, writing for local newspapers before joining the Club in 2009. He loves camping and enjoys nothing better than trekking off into the wilderness to 'rough it' for a couple of nights.

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