SOUTH POLE
VIRTUAL CHALLENGE

Follow in the spirit of Scott & Amundsen...
The Ultimate Winter Challenge!

Get to South Pole by Easter
5 DISTANCE OPTIONS
WALK, JOG, OR RUN
ANYWHERE, ANYTIME
Start - from now or asap!
Sign up before 31 Jan

Registration Closed

In the early 20th century, the race was on to reach the South Pole – with Britain’s Captain Scott & Norway’s Roald Amundsen launching expeditions. It ended in victory for Amundsen, who relied on traditional sledges & dogs, and reached the Pole on 14 December 1911. Scott’s ended in tragedy; reaching the Pole 33 days later, but perished on the return journey. 

Your New Year Virtual Challenge is to get to the ‘South Pole’ before Easter Sunday (31 March). There are 5 Challenge options – from the tough 800 mile route mirroring Amundsen’s – down the sharp 100 mile East Antarctica Route. Choose your distance – Walk, Jog, or Run ANYWHERE, ANYTIME from as soon as you sign up – log your progress and move along our Virtual Antarctica Map. Share your expedition stories & photos online, and you can Fundraise for a charity if you wish. 

Just £10 to join & an OPTIONAL medal & neck buff . Get your dog involved – as like Amundsen, yours’ may help you with your challenge! Treat them to a ‘South Pole Doggy Bandana’!

Join in - Get in shape for '24

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How it works...

Track your progress online

Once signed up to your chosen route, you can ‘link’ up to our Antartica Map with STRAVA / GARMIN / or FITBIT within your Ultra Britain Account – (so your activities automatically feed on to our map) OR you can add activity distances manually. Each time an activity is logged you’ll progress along your route along with other participants.

You have up to Easter Sunday (31 March) to complete your Challenge – and we’ll send you a special POST CARD once you safely arrive!  Start from Boxing Day onwards, and anyone can join up to 31 January.

Choose Your Challenge...

5 ROUTE Options

Walk, Jog, or Run. Anywhere - Anytime!

Ask your dog to join you – and treat them to a South Pole doggy bandana!

1

Amundsen Route

800 miles

Roald Amundsen Antarctic base was in the Bay of Whales – and after depot-laying, he with 5 men, 4 sledges, and 52 dogs set out in October 1911. They discovered the Axel Heiberg Glacier which provided their route to the polar plateau and then onto the South Pole. The expedition’s success was, in the UK, overshadowed by Scott’s heroic failure.

2

The Messner Route

600 miles

In 1989, Reinold Messner became the first to cross Antarctica without dogs or motorized support. Since then, people have followed his tracks by taking a shorter version, which skims along the edge of the Foundation Ice Stream and the Transantarctic Mountains for roughly 600 miles. Crevasse fields ripple out for many miles – so tread carefully!

3

The Novo Route

400 miles

Novo is one of seven Russian bases in Antarctica. Expedition teams often depart from airstrips further down the original full route – and ours is 400 miles from the Pole. In this obscure northern corner of Antarctica, the failure rate is the highest of any route, and features a long climb that brings teams above the altitude of the Pole. 

4

Leverett Glacier Route

200 miles

Only four expeditions have gone from the Leverett Glacier to the South Pole. More people finish ‘partial’ Antarctic traverses here than use it as a starting point. It is one of the shortest official routes to the South Pole and follows the flagged McMurdo-South Pole Highway. It is the only route that has seen not only skis but wheelchairs & tricycles!

5

East Antarctica Route

100 miles

Perfect if you want a leisurely start to your New Year! An ‘unofficial’ route – bespoke to this virtual challenge! The 100 miles is recognition of how close Ernest Shackleton’s 1909 Expedition got to reaching the South Pole – ending just 97 miles short! He returned on Endurance in 1914 aiming to be the first to cross Antarctica from sea to sea via the Pole.

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Prize Draws...

Fantastic prizes to be won

To keep you focused as we head into the colder months, we have x3 £100 kit vouchers from Cotswold Outdoors to give away for anyone who has met their halfway distance by the 14th February – and x5 kit vouchers for all at the South Pole by the end of Easter Sunday (31 March).

+ BEST EXPEDITION ‘SELFIE’get your winter gear on and post a photo in your Ultra Britain Account. Special PRIZE to be won – winner announced at the same time as the ‘Halfway’ draw.

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What you'll get...

Below is the cost of entry, inclusions & OPTIONAL EXTRAS (we can only send Medals, Buffs, Bandanas to a UK address). Registration is open until 31 JANUARY ’24 & Challenge ends 31 MARCH ’24 at the latest.

OPTIONAL EXTRAS

MAKE YOUR CHALLENGE SPECIAL!

Order yours' on the event registration form.

* Medals (with distance ribbon) will be dispatched after 31 March '24.
Neck Buffs & Doggy Bandanas from 31January.

Fundraise for Charity

Our Virtual Challenges have raised over £250,000 for UK Charities, and we’re hoping the South Pole Virtual Challenge will raise another £30,000 for the Ultra Challenge Charity Partners. SCROLL DOWN to set up a JUST GIVING page.

Series Partners

Challenge Partners

ASSOCIATE PARTNERS

Set up your Just Giving fundraising page...

If you’ve joined and want to fundraise for a charity of your choice – you need to set up a Just Giving sponsorship page using the button below. There’s no specific target – raise whatever you can!

The Virtual Map

Check out some FAQs

Terms & Conditions

16 Amazing Challenges

Over 200,000 adventurers have taken on an Ultra Challenge® so far, and the 16 unique events make up the UK’s biggest & best series of treks & trail runs – which have also raised £50+ million for charities. Whichever challenge you choose, you’ll get full support all the way so you can set a new goal, enjoy the British countryside, and Push Yourself Further! Whoever you are – If you’re up for a challenge, it has to be an Ultra Challenge!

Map

Lake District Ultra Challenge

8-9 June 2024

100 km loop + Half & Quarter Challenge options & Ambleside 10K

FULL DETAILS >

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Isle of Wight Ultra Challenge

5-6 May 2024

106 km ‘Full Island’ Loop + Half & Quarter Island options.

FULL DETAILS >

2 of 15

London 2 Brighton Ultra Challenge

25-26 May 2024

100 km + Half & Quarter Challenge distance options

FULL DETAILS >

3 of 15

South Coast Ultra Challenge

7-8 Sept 2024

100 km + Half & Quarter Challenge options

FULL DETAILS >

4 of 15

Jurassic Coast Ultra Challenge

18-19 May 2024

100 km + Half & Quarter Challenge options AND Marathon + Double Marathon & Bridport 10K

FULL DETAILS >

5 of 15

Thames Path Ultra Challenge

14 – 15 Sept 2024

100 km + 3/4 + Half & Quarter Challenge options

+ Thames Bridges 25km Trek (Sat – Central London)

+ Friday Moonlight 10K Walk (Central London)

+ The Henley 10K (Sunday)

FULL DETAILS >

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South West Coast 50 Ultra Challenge

3 August 2024

50 km Loop + 25 km & 10 km Challenge options

FULL DETAILS >

7 of 15

Peak District Ultra Challenge

6-7 July 2024

100 km Loop + Half & Quarter Challenge options & The Bakewell 10 Mile. 

FULL DETAILS >

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Cotswold Way Ultra Challenge

22 – 23 June 2024

100 km + Half & Quarter Challenge options.

FULL DETAILS >

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Chiltern 50 Ultra Challenge

28 Sept 2024

50 km Loop + 25 km & 10K Challenge options

FULL DETAILS >

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North Downs 50 Ultra Challenge

27 July 2024

50 km Loop + 25 km & 10km Challenge options.

FULL DETAILS >

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Easter 50 Ultra Challenge

Sat 6 April 2024

50 km 0r 25 km Loops 

FULL DETAILS >

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London Summer Walk

Sat 24 August 2024

25 KM or 10 KM looped route – Woolwich Start / Finish

FULL DETAILS >

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London Halloween Walk

Sat 26 October 2024

25 KM or 10 KM spooky looped route options. Start / finish – The Oval Cricket Ground ‘dungeon’,

FULL DETAILS >

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NEW – Kent Downs 50 Ultra Challenge

Sat 12 October 2024

50 KM, 25 KM or 10 KM looped routes options. Start / finish – The Kent Showground nr. Maidstone.

FULL DETAILS >>

 

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