Week 3 – Crossing Antarctica, A 1000 miles alone

Team Army is proud to be sponsoring Lou on this record breaking quest. This is the third week of the expedition in his own words:

Nov 18th – Day 16 in Antarctica. The Polar banshees are howling all night and Lou is forced to wake every hour and check the tent poles. Then the morning wind conditions delay Lou’s travel. By 2 o’clock in the afternoon the wind dies down and Lou fits in five hours and achieves 6.4 nautical miles.  >> READ MORE >> 

Nov 20th – Day 18 in Antarctica. After a few difficulties in communication we’re back with Lou. It’s another day of tough whiteout conditions. Zero visibility. No line on the horizon. Powdery snow underfoot. Determined to make it to Thiels Corner, Lou heaves his sinking pulk through the thick snow and chips through all 8 nautical miles before finally catching sight of a snow clearing vehicle, signalling his arrival at Thiels…  >>READ MORE>>

Nov 21st – Day 19 in Antarctica. A challenging day wading through deep and soft snow. Lou stays positive, reminding himself that the sastrugi has mostly filled in and flattened the surface under his skis. With more blasts of wind and lower temperatures it might set hard and make movement less challenging. Today the temperature has stayed mild, around -15C, which meant Lou was forced to wear his thermal top, taking his gloves on and off throughout the day… 

Nov 22nd – Day 20 in Antarctica. Tough conditions after heavy snowfall. Mild temperatures hover around -10. The fully loaded pulk becomes lodged in snow after around 500m. Whiteout descends. After a couple more miles Lou stops and opts to conserve energy. On previous expeditions he’s had to wait for up to five days for conditions to clear…  >>READ MORE>>

Nov 23rd – Day 21 in Antarctica. Three weeks into the journey, Lou charges on between pockets of soft snow, trudging hard up to higher ground on firm sastrugi, where he stops for a moment’s rest before blasting across to the next elevation. After lunch Lou contends with strong winds and eventually pitches his tent and wraps himself in his bag with the banshees howling outside – he’s made 10 nautical miles.  >>READ MORE>>

Nov 24th – Day 22 in Antarctica. After a night in his wind-hammered tent Lou steps out expecting raging katabatic winds. The hammering has eased off in the morning and Lou enjoys a wind-free day. Still, he has to face a 500ft morning climb over icy ground, trying to tame his sliding pulk as he heads up towards the Thiel mountains in the distance.  >>READ MORE>>

Nov 25th – Day 23 in Antarctica. A day of good, stable weather, light winds and great visibility. Around lunch Lou looks up and spots ALE’s Basier plane passing overhead, on its way from Union Glacier to the South Pole to set up camp for the first arrivals. Lou makes good progress and puts in 11 hours of solid skiing for 14 nautical miles. He can feel the weight of the pulk coming down and is now only 8 nautical miles from crossing 86 degrees South…  >>READ MORE>>

Expedition Facts

Capt Lou Rudd MBE is attempting to become the first person in history to complete a solo crossing of Antarctica, unsupported and unassisted. He will travel for 70 days over a distance of 1,500km, from Messner to the Ross Ice Shelf via the South Pole.

When: 1 Nov 18 to late Jan 19

Total Distance: 1,500km

Duration: 75 days

Hauling 140kg of food and equipment

No Resupplies/wind/ vehicle assistance/ outside help

Avg Temp: -30c

Calories: 6,000 per day


PRE-EXPEDITION LOGS – https://shackletonlondon.com/blogs/pre-expedition