ADVENTURER Leo Houlding chose a South Lakes school to unveil details of an audacious bid to be among the first Britons to climb the north east ridge of Antarctica’s toughest mountain.
The outdoor champion, from Staveley, announced his team’s hopes of tackling an unconquered route on Ulvetanna at Milnthorpe’s Dallam School as part of an educational partnership.
Teaming up with the Adventure Learning Schools (ALS) charity, Leo and six others aim to inspire youngsters across the region by completing the 1,300-metre ascent in up to 20 days, starting on December 15.
Leo, 32, launched a special Chill Factore event at Dallam – the country’s first adventure learning school – to allow students to follow every inch of the team’s journey through a UK first ‘live’ learning expedition.
He anticipates the challenge being his ‘greatest adventure to date’ and said: “We dedicate it as a first of its kind live learning expedition to challenge young people as they undertake a range of expedition challenges.
“The ethos and principles behind Adventure Learning Schools are close to my heart and I have seen for myself the excitement young people experience and the benefits of using wilderness expeditions to provide a unique approach to the national curriculum.”
Students will take part in outdoor activities including skiing, climbing and sky diving, providing insights into all the expedition’s challenges.
And Leo has collaborated with the ALS charity and the school to develop a special curriculum for students, covering areas like logistics, climate and nutrition.
Steve Holdup, Dallam head teacher, said: “We have committed our school to the ALS ethos and witnessed dramatic results. Leo is our local hero and we are excited to be part of his epic adventure.”
The climbers will share intimate details about their experiences of remote Antarctica and Leo will attempt a UK first to communicate live with schools during the expedition.
Windermere Preparatory School and Dallam are among six North West schools involved in the project.
Both have presented the climbers with school flags, for the team to display at base camp.
In 2010 Leo completed his nine-year quest to climb the Prophet – a 2,000-feet high extreme rock route in California’s Yosemite National Park.