Level Peaks are proud to support this remarkable feat of human endurance: A solo, unsupported, unassisted crossing of the Antarctic Continent, which no man has previously completed.
Louis Rudd, a former British soldier with 33 years military service, is about to embark on his greatest challenge yet. No stranger to extreme endeavours, in 2011 along with good friend Henry Worsley, Lou completed an 800 mile, 68-day unsupported expedition from the Bay of Whales to the South Pole, via the Heiberg Glacier, following the original route of Amundsen. This was soon followed up in 2016 with the SPEAR17 Army Reserves expedition; a 67-day, 1,100-mile complete traverse of Antarctica from Hercules Inlet via the South Pole to the Shackleton Glacier. Being the first British team to do so, he was awarded an MBE for his achievements.
Now Lou has set himself the most extreme test of strength and perseverance, which has also taken on a deeply personal meaning. Three years ago, his friend and Polar adventure mentor Lieutenant Colonel Henry Worsley, attempted the same feat – an unsupported traverse of Antarctica and tragically lost his life, falling short just 30 miles of completing what no man had before. Lou has masterminded the ‘Spirit of Endurance’ expedition to follow in the footsteps of Sir Ernest Shackleton and complete his original mission to traverse the continent on foot.
Starting on 17thOct 2018, for over two months and more than 1,500 kilometres, he’ll go head-to-head with nature’s most brutal and inhospitable environment. Temperatures will drop as low as -50C. Winds will gust upwards of 100mph. The elevation above sea level will reach 10,000ft. He’ll need to consume 6,500 calories a day whilst burning upwards of 10,000 – more than a Tour de France cyclist – to ski across harsh terrain pulling his pulk sled loaded with everything he needs for the expedition.
“When I’m on the journey, I’ll accept my life for what it is. I will ski and pull. That will be my only purpose. I’ll try to forget the outside world, things like warm beds and hot showers. I’ll take the view that those things don’t exist.”
Such an intense and single-minded focus will be required to pass through the trials Lou will face – the depths of both mental and physical fortitude needed are indeed hard to fathom.
Level Peaks Associates are proud to support Lou with much need funds as well as world-class clothing and equipment. All of us here at LPA wish Lou the very best of luck and a safe and successful expedition. We have supplied Lou with a few specialist pieces of equipment as well as funds towards the cost of the expedition. He’ll need to use all the training and experience gathered from years of soldiering to fly the flag for the British Army; the genesis for his singular determination, unflinching discipline, all-encompassing preparation and distinct capacity to endure.