Explorers sail for Antarctic winter crossing, no rescue
CAPE TOWN - Agence France-Presse
Ranulph Fiennes (L) is leading a team of explorers to cross Antarctica. AFP photoAdventurer Sir Ranulph Fiennes said Jan. 6 his bid for the world’s first Antarctic winter crossing, with no option of rescue, would be a trip into the unknown despite his multiple record expeditions. Known as one of the world’s greatest living explorers, Fiennes will depart Monday for the coldest place on Earth.
The intrepid adventurer, 68, became the oldest Briton to summit Mount Everest in 2009. He has also crossed both polar ice caps and in 1992-93, he crossed the Antarctic unsupported.
Records in summer
The six-member team left Cape Town yesterday in a bid to become the first to traverse Antarctica, a distance of more than nearly 4,000 kilometers, in the Southern Hemisphere’s winter, which begins in mid-March.
“We’ve been doing expeditions for a total of 40 years. We’ve broken a great number of world records. In Antarctica we’ve got two huge records, one in 1979 and one in 1992, but they are all in summer,” Fiennes said.
“So we aren’t any more expert than anybody else at winter travel. There is no past history of winter travel in Antarctica apart from the 60-mile journey. So we are into the unknown.”