Polar explorer set to lead pupils on Snowdon climb

By Steve Carpenter Thursday 03 January 2013 Updated: 03/01 10:36

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Buy photos » Mark Wood is gearing up for his next challenge. Photo by Jamie Gray 44.011.004.cov.jg1

HIS last adventure saw him ski solo to the South Pole and North Pole back-to-back to raise awareness of climate change, but now explorer Mark Wood has revealed his next challenge will take place a little closer to home.

The Observer followed the 45-year-old’s epic journey last year that saw him celebrate Christmas alone with a toy penguin, gatecrash a wedding ceremony at the summit of the North Pole and more importantly share his experiences with local schools.

Now Mark is planning to help a cause a little closer to home after revealing his plans to lead a group of pupils from Sherbourne Fields School in Coundon, up Snowdon, the highest mountain in Wales.

The aim of the climb, which is set to take place in June/July, is to raise much-needed funds for the school to continue running its after-school.

“I want to draw attention to what the school does but also I want to give their hard-working parents a night off.

“The after-school classes gives these parents a night off which they deserve.

“It will be a massive challenge for these guys and I’ve told them they’ve got to put in a lot of hard work

“They understand that they’ll need to by physically prepared because for someone like me it might take around four hours to get to the top, but for these guys it is more likely to take 7-8 hours.”

Mark has been involved with several expeditions throughout his career.

The former Finham Park pupil took part in a 70-day arctic survival in Canada for Cancer Research UK and was a key member of the team which guided Top Gear stars Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May to the North Pole in 2007.

He has helped set up the Educational Schools Programme, giving pupils the opportunity to experience and communicate with him throughout his journey.

And now he wants to bring that journey to life for a special set of pupils who have inspired the explorer.

“One asked me if they would ever be able to climb Everest in a wheelchair,” Mark added.

“Although I said it might not be impossible, it would be extremely tough.

“But it’s not about where you go, it’s all about the journey itself. I told these guys that they have to have their own ambitions and achievements.”

To keep up-to-date with Mark’s latest projects visit markwoodexplorer.com or follow him on twitter.com/markwoodexplore

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