Antarctic-South Pole trek for Aussie adventurers

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The Independent Online

Two Australian adventurers said Tuesday they planned to attempt a new world record by walking from the edge of the Antarctic to the South Pole and back again.

James Castrission, 29, and Justin Jones, 28 will make the trek in October to coincide with the 100-year centenary of Scott and Amundsen's famous race to the pole in 1911.

The pair, who created history in 2008 when they became the first people to kayak from Australia to New Zealand, will transport everything they need to survive the three-month endurance test in two 160-kilogramme (352-pound) sleds.

It will involve them having to drag the load over 2,200 kilometres (1,364 miles) through one of the Earth's harshest environments.

"The Tasman was just a warm-up as Antarctica is going to be far more demanding, both physically and mentally," Castrission said, adding that they planned to raise funds for children with cancer.

"The ever-present risk of yawning crevasses, piercing cold, hypothermia and frostbite are challenges we will need to deal with on a daily basis.

"Although we're pushing our bodies to the limit, we know that our challenge is nothing in comparison to the journey that young Aussies with cancer have so we want to share our story and raise these funds in a spirit of solidarity."

Some 58 people have managed to walk to the South Pole, but none have done it there and back, according to the adventurers.

Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen was the first to reach the South Pole in December 1911.

The rival party led by Britain's Robert Scott arrived at the South Pole shortly after Amundsen, but he and his team members died on the return journey.

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