The 737 Challenge: Seven Summits, Three Poles, Seven Months

I write about a host of ambitious expeditions and projects here on The Adventure Blog, but here’s one that is on a completely different level.

Welsh adventurer Richard Parks has set quite a goal for himself. He plans to reach the top of all of the Seven Summits, as well as both the North and South Pole, in just seven months time. He’s calling his expedition the 737 Challenge, which stands for 7 Summits, 3 Poles, 7 Months. Mt. Everest, the highest mountain in the world, is sometimes called the “third pole.”

The expedition is set to begin in December, with a trip to the South Pole and a climb of Mt. Vinson. From there he’ll move on to Aconcagua in South America, followed by Kilimanjaro in Africa, and Carstensz Pyramid in Oceania. Then it’s on to the North Pole before tackling Everest and Denali. He’ll finish up on Elbrus in Europe sometime next summer. Parks hopes to use the expedition as a platform to raise funds for the Marie Curie Cancer Care organization, certainly a noble cause.

When I first started to read about this Richard’s adventure, I thought this will be a logistical nightmare and nearly impossible to complete in just seven months time. After all, we’ve been following Eric Larsen on his Save The Poles journey for nearly a year now, and Eric “only” went to the North and South Pole and is in the process of attempting Everest. But it turns out that Richard will be covering the last two degrees to the South Pole and the final degree to the North Pole. Both of those journeys will take considerably less time than Eric’s expedition, and change the logistics significantly.

Don’t get me wrong, this is still a very ambitious project, but those shorter polar expeditions will make it possible to cover the Seven Summits too. This should be a great seven month journey for him and an amazing feat for anyone to accomplish.

Good luck Richard!