A FORMER SAS soldier from Hereford has given an update from Antarctica as he tries to climb the continent's highest peak.

Louis Rudd MBE has already skied more than 400 miles in 50 days, completely unaided, with his disabled expedition partner and former veteran Martin Hewitt.

Record-breaking polar adventurer Louis Rudd, a former Royal Marine Commando and SAS soldier with 34 years service, successfully made it to the South Pole last week with former Parachute Regiment Captain Hewitt, who lost the use of his right arm after being shot while serving in Afghanistan.


But after the grueling mission, the pair have now started to climb Mount Vinson in Antarctica, a mountain more than 16,000ft high.

The pair arrived at Vinson base camp on Monday and spent two days preparing before setting off on Wednesday.

Cpt Rudd, the more experienced mountaineer of the two, is wary of the extreme weather conditions they could face, particularly high winds as they move up the mountain, according to clothing company Shackleton, which has been involved in the ambitious mission.

The company said Cpt Rudd, 52, knows if the conditions go in their favour they could complete the 4,892-metre climb to the summit in a matter of days.


Reporting back to the firm on Tuesday, he said: "The wind often gets faster as you get higher and there’s greater risk with that when you’re mountaineering.

"The weather will dictate our progress up the hill but there's potential for us to move from here [base camp] tomorrow to low camp, potentially go to high camp the next day, and potentially go for the summit the next day.

"Provided our pace is ok, and we don’t suffer from altitude sickness. So it could be quite a short, sharp phase this. We’ll wait and see."

Cpt Rudd, who, in 2018, became the first Briton to ski solo across Antarctica, also said: "I’ve never seen such a volume of snow, in any mountain range in the world.”

If Cpt Hewitt, 41, successfully climbs Mount Vinson, he'll only have Carstenz Pyramid in Indonesia left to complete on his way to becoming the first person with a disability to complete the Explorers Grand Slam, aka Adaptive Grand Slam.

The challenge will see him reach the North and South Poles and climb seven mountains.