British explorer Pen Hadow has big plans for 2013 and they involve one of the longest and most challenging polar expeditions in history. Earlier this week, the 50-year-old Hadow announced that he intends to make a full arctic traverse traveling solo and unsupported on foot from Russia to Canada via the North Pole.
Starting early next year, Hadow will set out from Siberia and begin heading north. He’ll drag all of his food, gear and other supplies behind him on a sled as he travels over ice, snow and even open water in his quest to reach the North Pole. Once his compass reads 90ºN, he’ll start the southward portion of his expedition, which will end when he reaches northern Canada. The entire journey is expected to take roughly 100 days to complete and will cover over 1000 miles in the Arctic.
This won’t be Pen’s first foray into the frozen places of the planet. In 2003 he became the first person to travel alone and without resupply to the North Pole from the Canadian side of the planet. Since then, he has also visited the South Pole and participated in several scientific surveys on the health of the planet’s icecaps.
While this is quite an ambitious expedition, it has been accomplished once before. Norwegian polar legend Borge Ousland made the same trek back in 2001. If Ousland’s name sounds familiar, it may be because he was the groom in that wedding that took place at the North Pole a few weeks back.
[Photo courtesy Pen Hadow]