Sedon takes on one hell of a polar mission
Lake Hawea adventurer Mark Sedon is embarking on a 2000km Antarctic expedition described by his British team leader Leo Houlding as ‘‘exploration at the edge of impossible’’.
Houlding’s trans-Antarctic expedition has been described by the Financial Times as ‘‘the most audacious and potentially groundbreaking polar expedition in a generation’’.
It’s not a task for everyman. There will be just three: Sedon, Houlding and Frenchman Jean Burgun. They aim to be home in January, after 70 days kite-skiing and climbing across a crevassecut route that begins at Union Glacier, pioneers the unclimbed south face of Mt Spectre, and finishes at Scott Glacier.
Sedon will undertake his role as the Spectre Expedition’s chief photographer on a diet of dehydrated scrambled eggs and peppermint Whittakers chocolate.
It’s going to be so jaw-achingly cold, he reckons he’d break his teeth on any other frozen Kiwi sweet treats such as jaffas or pineapple lumps.
In its October 28 article, the Financial Times checked the audacity of Houlding’s plans to pioneer Spectre’s smooth south face with other renowned climbers.
‘‘Make no mistake, it is a hell of a thing they are undertaking,’’ Sir Chris Bonington, of the UK, said.
‘‘The hair on my arms stands up just thinking about it,’’ said United States climber Edmund Stump, who with his late brother Mugs, pioneered Spectre from the more straightforward north side.
Sedon, 48, was invited along after talking about the expedition with Houlding at the New Zealand Mountain Film Festival in Wanaka and Queenstown – an event Sedon and his wife Jo have organised for 15 years.
‘‘My position just got confirmed a couple of months ago when one member pulled out and there was a spot for me . . . Luckily for me I fitted in just perfect.’’
‘‘The hair on my arms stands up just thinking about it.’’
He almost forgot to tell, so caught up was he in preparing for an effort that he says will be much, much harder than climbing Mt Everest.
While Houlding took an interview in the hallowed halls of England’s Royal Geographic Society, Sedon spilled the beans at the airport, as he was leaving the
The full feature on the Spectre Expedition is on stuff.co.nz/travel/themes/adventure/98393031.
Mark Sedon (left), Leo Houlding and Jean Burgun start their Antarctic expedition this month.