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Adventure Training: Setting up the Tent

“The bold adventurer succeeds the best” – Ovid


To successfully make the trek across the 89th degree to the South Pole, I need a lot more

than just physical training and cardiovascular fitness. I will need to think like an

explorer and act like an adventurer, as the success of the journey is also reliant upon the

skills I will have learnt and my ability to be a good team member. As I am now several

months into my training, it is now appropriate to begin understanding the fundamental

skills of polar shelter, teamwork dynamics, gear management and cooking.


The most vital asset for my polar expedition is the tent, serving as my ultimate tool for

survival by providing crucial shelter against the harsh elements. I will be using a

Hilleburg K4, the standard tent for polar expeditions due to its exceptional durability,

impressive stability in strong winds, spacious interior, and most importantly, simplicity.


During my first training session, I had emphasized how I had never been camping. It

was daunting to think about all the information I had to absorb, as every element, every

piece of information, would be critical to ensuring the tent was put up as swiftly as

possible to get out of the harsh conditions. Our session was designed to simulate two

team members working together to pitch the tent as quickly as possible. I had to

familiarize myself with the different parts of the tent and learn the steps to

systematically unpack the tent, put the parts together, pitch the tent and peg it down.


We did this multiple times until I was comfortable to not only do it by myself, but

alongside a team member. Assigning roles was one way to keep things simple and

organized. Subsequent sessions will centre around reinforcing and repeating key

components, a critical approach as I approach the South Pole trek, to ensure that the

information and skills are firmly ingrained.


In my next blog, I will dive into the setting up the gas stove and my expedition to

Perisher to put my training to use – in the cold.


Stay tuned!

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