Stancer Forced to Give Up

Published on 31.05.2007 - Mars North Pole Solo

On May 28th, British woman Rosie Stancer, while attempting to reach the North Pole solo, was forced to abandon her expedition.

The Ken Borek pilots, who were supposed to carry the second re-supply to her, thought that, considering the deteriorating ice conditions of these past few weeks, it was too dangerous to pick her up any further on the sea ice. Rosie gave in. Here is the press release which was published the day following her resignation.

Furthest north solo by a woman - but North Pole hopes dashed for Rosie Stancer

After 84 extremely gruelling days and 326 miles on the ice, British woman Rosie Stancer has been forced to end her attempt to become the first woman to reach the North Pole solo. Rosie was picked up from the ice yesterday evening only 89 miles from the North Pole. (Her position at pick up was 88 3157N 48 47 37W.)

Pilots who had flown in from Eureka Weather Station in Northern Canada on a planned re-supply made the decision that a future pick-up would be too dangerous due to the deteriorating ice conditions between her current position and the North Pole. Not willing to compromise the safety of the pilots, Rosie agreed to be picked up, abandoning a lifelong dream.

Having battled against what has been described by many as the worst conditions in recent history, Rosie has firmly established herself in the record books having reached further North than any other woman solo. During the expedition she has experienced temperatures from as low as -55C to dangerously warm levels of -2C, repeated storms and shifting ice. Rosie found herself encountering miles of never ending ice rubble and more dangerously, larger and more frequent open water leads.

Overcoming these difficulties on her own makes Rosie's journey even more significant and an achievement of epic proportions. Members of the polar community have stepped out in support of Rosie including Norwegian Liv Arnesen and fellow Brit Ann Daniels.

Ann Daniels said:

"I can imagine how disappointed Rosie must be feeling at the moment, but I hope she is also proud of her phenomenal achievement on the ice. She has endured terrible conditions and unimaginable hardships and still battled continually on, in what I believe is one of the hardest journeys in the world. Rosie is an inspiration to us all and my admiration for her is colossal."

Liv Arnesen said:

" If she had to come off the ice, by experience, I know it is a painful decision to take. Rosie has faced unusually tough conditions on the Arctic Ocean, but still gone far further than any solo female before her. I congratulate her on a great expedition!"

Pen Hadow said:

"I know of no one who would have pushed themselves as Rosie has done – and then so gracefully subjugate their personal ambition, with only a few days travel remaining to the Pole, with thought only for the safety of their air support team. Such scale of character is a shining example in a dim world, and I, for one, am proud to salute her courage in the most extreme circumstances."

Rosie is due in the UK on Saturday 2nd June. Her return is highly anticipated by family and especially her 5 year old son Jock. HRH The Prince of Wales is Patron to the Expedition.

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