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Bangor University student selected for expedition to last unexplored Polar region

14 Nov 2022 3 minute read
George Reese in training for the Last Pole expedition

A student from Bangor University has been selected to take part in an expedition to one of the most remote and inhospitable places in the world.

George Reese, a Marine Biology & Zoology student from Lugwardine, has been picked by renowned explorer, Jim McNeill to take part in what is being described as ‘one of the most important and ambitious polar expeditions of our time’ – to be the first expedition in history to reach the Northern Pole of Inaccessibility, collecting vital climate change data on route.

Defined as the furthest point from land on the Arctic Ocean and therefore its centre, the Northern Pole of Inaccessibility remains the last truly significant place in the Polar Regions, yet to be reached by humankind and is over 270 miles further than the Geographic North Pole.

The whole journey will be near to 800 miles from the northern shores of Canada.

The data gathered by the expedition will be used to benchmark the condition of the ocean for the NASA funded National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC), led by Nobel Prize winning scientist, Walt Meier.

Along with weather data, measurements of pollution and counting polar bears that may be encountered, this will deliver important details about the impact of climate change.

Having been selected for the Ice Warrior #LASTPOLE Expedition George, who has taken a year out from his studies, is currently undergoing a comprehensive and intensive 12-month training programme to take on one of four 20-day legs, pushing the route across the Arctic Ocean.


George said: “I have always dreamed of being a polar explorer and taking part in a big expedition such as this. Being a part of this expedition will deepen my understanding of my scientific studies whilst collecting scientific data along the way.

“By taking on a life changing challenge such as this, it’s sure to broaden my career prospects within the natural history film-making industry.

“My comprehensive training so far has consisted of rigorous first aid and expedition core skills, over the last twelve months and I am now preparing for Polar and Advanced Polar training in Svalbard come January 2023.

“I feel like my path and past challenges have brought me to a point where I’m looking forward to taking on a challenge such as the Last Pole Expedition.”

Explorer, expedition leader and Founder of Ice Warrior, Jim McNeill said “I’m delighted to have George in the expedition team and look forward to training him in every aspect which will make him a competent polar traveller.”

The Northern Pole of Inaccessibility was first established in 1927 by Sir Hubert Wilkins, by aircraft but was recently re-positioned by Jim McNeill and NSIDC scientists using modern satellite technology and is the farthest point from any coastline or the very centre of the Arctic Ocean.

The Last Pole expedition aims to depart in February 2023.

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