Inspiring Explorers Expedition™ team with Trust staff, representatives from Inspiring Explorers™ Programme Partners, MetService, Royal Society Te Apārangi and Sir Edmund Hillary Collegiate, and mountain guides Lydia Bradey and Dean Staples at Hillary House Leadership Centre. © AHT
The Trust is delighted to introduce the 22 Inspiring Explorers™ who will embark on an unforgettable journey – heading to South Georgia Island in September 2023. This expedition, presented by respected operator Antarctica21, will honour the centenary year of Sir Ernest Shackleton’s final expedition (Quest 1921–1922), which marked the end of the heroic-era of Antarctic exploration.
Our ninth Inspiring Explorers Expedition™ marks a significant milestone as it is the Trust’s largest expedition group yet. The diverse team from all over New Zealand includes Charlie Thomas, Cole Yeoman, Destiny Martin, Gemma Wyllie, Henry Conquer, Jenny Sahng, Kelsey Waghorn, Lawrence Rothwell, Peregrin Hyde, Rose Lasham, Savannah de Vos, Siobhan O’Connor, Te Aroha Devon, and Tegan Allpress.
Joining them is a group of four Inspiring Explorers attempting the first Kiwi ascent of Mount Worsley, named in honour of Kiwi explorer Frank Worsley. The climbing team of Lily Green, Millie Mannering, Sam West, and Sasha Cheng will be guided by renowned mountaineering experts, Lydia Bradey and Dean Staples, and accompanied by Trust Emeritus Executive Director, Nigel Watson. Lily Green, a 20-year-old explorer in the Mount Worsley team, calls it a ‘bucket-list experience.’
“It’s just insane, I can’t even explain how amazing this opportunity is. Mount Worsley is a big deal, and I can’t believe I get to be a part of the first Kiwi group to attempt it.”
High school students Porohu Hagai from Sir Edmund Hillary Collegiate and Rykien Amiatu from Tangaroa College, were selected through the Trust’s ongoing partnership with the AIMHI network of schools in South Auckland (NZ).
Rounding out the Inspiring Explorers™ team is Royal Society Te Apārangi representative Kaitlyn Martin and MetService representative Kelly Davenport. We are grateful to have valued Inspiring Explorers™ Programme Partners, MetService and Royal Society Te Apārangi, supporting this expedition and fostering the Inspiring Explorers’ passion for exploration, discovery, and science.
MetService meteorologist Kelly Davenport will lead the science programme, mentoring our Inspiring Explorers to use historic and modern technologies to gather weather data and make weather observations and forecasts. This work will deepen understanding of the area’s weather and ocean conditions, and contribute to knowledge of climate change impacts.
“I love sharing my knowledge of meteorology and I look forward to taking the team through the process of making weather observations and conveying how they contribute to weather forecasting today.” says Kelly.
To ensure the team get the most out of this exciting experience, a team building weekend took place in June 2023. This was a chance for the Inspiring Explorers™ to meet each other and Trust staff, understand the reasons behind the expedition, learn about the Trust’s legacy, and plan their group outreach projects, inspired by their time in South Georgia, covering topics such as climate change, education, history, and science. The Trust is grateful to Sir Edmund Hillary Collegiate and the Hillary House Leadership Centre for hosting the team building weekend. South Georgia Island, located in the remote South Atlantic Ocean, is renowned for its abundant wildlife, home to king penguins, fur seals, and 50 percent of the world’s southern elephant seals.
In addition to the natural wonders of South Georgia, it is also a place deeply steeped in the legacy of polar exploration. Shackleton’s legacy and the heroic-era of Antarctic exploration will resonate with these Inspiring Explorers, inspiring them to embrace the spirit of exploration in our rapidly changing world.
The Inspiring Explorers will set sail to South Georgia on Antarctica21’s ship, the Magellan Explorer, in late September.