Bath Rugby Academy Director and World Cup winner Danny Grewcock has started his extreme challenge for charity: headnorth, a 100km trek from Ice Camp Barneo to the Geographic North Pole, the highest point on Earth.
The team narrowly avoided disaster when they ran not into polar bears, but poor visibility. The team's plane then had to make an emergency landing en route to the starting point at Ice Camp Barneo. Thankfully, the team was safe and well, but the plane's undercarriage suffered damage and a helicopter had to be dispatched to take them the rest of way.
As of today, as the team starts to pull their sleds towards the North Pole, they have raised over £150,000 for the Lewis Moody Foundation and the Royal Marines Charitable Trust Fund (RMCTF) - meaning they are now over halfway towards their intended fundraising target. With a week to go until they reach the finish line, there is still time to help them reach their goal of £250,000 by donating at www.head-north.org.
Joining Grewcock on this gruelling expedition are fellow World Cup winners Lewis Moody and Josh Lewsey, two Royal Marines, Y.CO co-founders Gary Wright and Charlie Birkett and Yacht Management Director Yves Damette. The team is led by experienced North Pole explorer Alan Chambers MBE.
The Lewis Moody Foundation helps families affected by serious illness, offering days out and one-off experiences for children and their families, and funds scientific research through The Brain Tumour Charity, aimed at saving young lives.
The RMCTF provides a better quality of life to serving and retired Royal Marines and their families, and helps the wounded and injured, particularly as the most severely injured begin their transition into civilian life.
The trek traverses over 100km of shifting sea ice and is a huge challenge for all involved. After acclimatisation in the relative civilisation of Barneo, the team will trek for 10 days northwards, to Latitude 90° North, a total distance of around 100km (or 60 nautical miles). The group will battle over a constantly moving ice flow through an unpredictable polar climate pulling 50kg sledges. Temperatures are between -30 and -35ºC and there is a constant threat of polar bear attacks and storms.
This journey is one of the most extreme tests of physical and psychological endurance that humans can experience. Watch our exclusive BRtv video with Grewcock and Moody to hear more about why they are undertaking their biggest challenge to date.
You can donate to these fantastic causes at justgiving.com/teams/ycoheadnorth or TEXT YCOH15 £amount to 70070.