Thursday, November 05, 2009

Antarctica 2009: Pre-Departure Interviews From ExWeb


As I've mentioned a couple of times this week, the Antarctic season is really starting to ramp up as explorers and climbers begin making their way to various staging areas in the Southern Hemisphere. They're combing through their gear, making last minute adjustments to their plans, and preparing to hit the ice at long last. It is a busy time for these expeditions, who are hoping they brought everything they'll need and that they have their plans in place for a successful journey ahead.

Explorers Web is always a great source of info on adventures that take place around the globe, and they do a great job of covering the Antarctic expeditions, amongst many other things. Over the past couple of days they've posted two good interviews with two different women who are heading to Antarctica for their own expeditions.

First up, we have this interview with Felicity Aston, who will be leading the Kaspersky Commonwealth Expedition that I mentioned a few days back. The team will consist of seven women from Commonwealth countries from around the globe, who will be skiing to the South Pole together. Felicity touches on why she decided to put this expedition together, how she selected the team she did, and a whole lot more. The girls are already in Chile, and have already made arrangements with ALE for getting their gear together and read for the expedition.

The second interview from ExWeb is with Canadian Meagan McGrath, who is making the 700+ mile journey from Hercules Inlet to the South Pole, solo and unassisted. For Meagan, this is just another adventure in a pretty exciting life, as she has already summitted Everest and four other 8000 meter peaks. As part of her interview, Meagan talks about the physical and psychological preparation she has done for the Antarctic expedition, who some of her "polar mentors" have been, and what the biggest challenges will be for her as she spends 40+ days out on the ice.

For Meagan, this is just the beginning of a year long adventure. She quit her job last week, and will be setting off to Chile next week to take on the Antarctic. But that's just the start. She'll also be leading a trek to Everest Base Camp, and attempting to summit Lhotse, K2, Broad Peak, Cho Oyu and Shishapangma as well. Sounds like an amazing year ahead, and I applaud her for having the courage to go after these HUGE adventures. We're going to be lucky enough to come along for the ride. :)