Women are in the minority when it comes to Polar exploration. The first woman in Antarctica was Norwegian Caroline Mikkelsen in 1935, since Bellinghausen first sighted the continent in 1821. Expedition leader Wendy Searle wanted to know if she too could pioneer a new route, just as Shackleton, Scott, Amundsen and Mawson had in the early 20th Century.
Falling in love with Antarctica through her work as UK operations and media manager for a previous expedition (2016/17 SPEAR17, which completed the first unsupported full traverse of the continent) Wendy was inspired by this and many previous expeditions. Deciding to pioneer a new route was as important as the requirement to 'man-haul', or to drag all the food, kit and equipment in special sleds, known as pulks.
Wendy wants to show others that the extraordinary is available to everyone. A mother of four children, each will have a part to play in the expedition, from videographer, training partner or blogger.
Living by two adages; 'never waste a second', and 'never give up', she will need every ounce of physical and mental resolve to reach her goal.
Although Wendy has a day job, her first love is adventure, and pushing mental and physical boundaries. Taking up skydiving two years ago, Wendy now jumps regularly and blogs about her adventures both in the sky and on the ground.
Team member Lou Rudd, an experienced Antarctica adventurer, will add this new route to his ascent of the Axel-Heiberg Glacier in 2012, and the descent of the Shackleton Glacier in 2017.