55-year-old British Army veteran Henry Worsley has announced that he intends to attempt the first unassisted crossing of Antarctica in history and his making his way over to the continent. Worsley has previously reenacted two early-20th-century journeys and is and is an Edwardian polar adventure enthusiast.

In the year Worsley managed to retrace the 1907–09 crossing of the Transantarctic Mountains by Ernest Shackleton and subsequently followed the Roald Amundsen’s 1912 route to reach the South Pole in 2011-12.

Marking the centennial of Shackleton’s failed 1915 attempt to cross Antarctica, Worsley hopes to retrace Shackleton’s course to achieve what his predecessor couldn’t. Shackleton’s attempt to cross the continent was foiled when his ship stuck in ice in the Weddell Sea, forcing him and his crew to abandon their ship.

Worsley will mark the beginning of his journey rom Berkner Island’s Gould Bay, west of Luitpold Coast, Coats Land, the closest mainland of Eastern Antarctica (near where Shackleton began his own journey 100 years ago), following which he will head south, cross the Geographic South Pole, turn right and proceed north onto the Ross Ice Shelf, the largest ice shelf in Antarctica. He will then continue north, descending the Shackleton Glacier. He plans to complete the trip in 75 days, although he is carrying 80 days’ worth of food.

Crossing the icy continent isn’t the only ambition of Worsley’s expedition. He aims to raise raise a goal of £100,000 ($154,000) to donate to the Endeavour Fund, a charity dedicated to helping veterans of the British armed forces. In fact his efforts have been endorsed by Prince William, who said: “It’s a huge challenge, but there’s no better person than you..We’ll be thinking of you at Christmas.”

– The Global Panorama

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