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LETTERS FROM HOME
We give voice to the loved ones of our intrepid adventurers. This week, it’s the turn if Henry’s children Max and Alicia:
“After my dad’s first trip to the pole, I didnt for a minute think that it would be his last! When Mark started coming round to the house a year ago, I was completely gripped and excited about their new expedition. On most weekends, the garden was scattered with equipment, the kitchen table covered in maps, and there were two Polar enthusiasts wandering around the house with faces of concentration and excitment.”
“All of the guys have put their whole hearts into this expedition and they all deserve the sense of achievement that they’ll receive – it must be an indescribable feeling for them when they all reach the pole after such a tough journey. The British Legion’s recovery centres for injured soldiers is the most incredible cause, and the boys intend to continue fundraising for this when they return to England which will be fantastic. I cant wait for them all to get back, and wish them the best of luck in the last stages of their journey.”
Henry's wife Joanna, with son Max and daughter Alicia
“I can never really understand what Daddy loves about being freezing cold, not sleeping in a cosy bed, not having proper food, and all the other endless things that come in the South Pole package! But the only thing I can do is support him, and trust me I do.”
“However much I miss him, my favourite part is seeing him at the airport with a long GREY beard, bringing him home and cooking him the first home cooked meal he’s had in a long time.”
“He is fulfilling his dream; showing everyone in the world that it can be done. I reckon there are many people who are just sitting thinking about their dreams, but never get round to making them a reality because they have some silly excuse (like too much work)! But Daddy has and however many more expeditions he’s going to do, I will support him with every single one.”
“How many people can say that their Dad has walked to the South Pole, not once but twice. I think that there are more people that have stood on the moon than done this route across the Antarctic and it’s an amazing achievement. I’m not going to lie, the only way you could make me go is in a plane of some sort, but that’s cheating…… maybe one day Mum and I could meet him there???”
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A series of reflections on Antarctic travels past and present, by Peter Otway. In the early 1960s, Peter surveyed much of the areas through which our teams are now passing.
“Our 3-month survey of the Beardmore-Axel Heiberg region, although typical of the NZ geological and Survey expeditions in the early 1960s, was unique in some respects, covering a larger area than usual (21,000 sq miles) and involving living on the Polar Plateau at 8,000 to 11,000 feet. Best of all from my own perspective, our 4-man team had the privilege of exploring and mapping the areas made famous by Shackleton, Scott, Amundsen and Byrd. The plan devised by our leader, Wally Herbert, was to be landed (by a US Navy DC3) at the head of the Mill Glacier, flowing into the upper Beardmore. How cushy compared to Team Scott’s 7 week slog across the ice shelf and up the glacier! We would then work our way eastward around the edge of the plateau to the Axel Heiberg, setting up our survey stations on high peaks with commanding views over wide expanses of nunataks, mountains and glaciers, all the way down to the Ross Ice Shelf to 60 miles to the north.”
Click here to read Part 2 of Peter Otway’s Reflections in full
Keep track of both teams with our interactive Google Earth map. Zoom in to see each day’s progress, with the position marked by pictures of team leaders Henry Worsley and Mark Langridge. Click on the icon to see that day’s sitrep in full.
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A Special Message to all Schools
The three schools that raise the most funds for the Scott-Amundsen Race and the Royal British Legion will be rewarded with a visit from the Scott team! Mark, Vic and Kev will give a full presentation during their visit, with slides, videos, images, in short, the full works.
Schools wishing to donate should do so via the JustGiving.com page. Enter the name of your school when donating, and email Andy the webmaster firstname.lastname@example.org to make sure we register your donation.
We’d also like to invite all the schools that are following the progress to contact the webmaster, so that you can be mentioned on a new “Scott-Amundsen Schools” page. Please include a very short text on your school and any SACR-related activities, especially fundraising efforts! We’ll list your school plus a link to your website.