Women's Sports: Two British women complete their solos to the South Pole

Mollie Hughes became the youngest woman to solo to the South Pole, arriving today after over 58 days skiing from the coast of Antarctica.

The 29-year-old spent 650 hours skiing in conditions that included whiteouts, minus 45C temperatures and storm-force winds. 

This is her second world record. She is currently also the first English woman and the youngest woman to summit Everest from both the north and south faces.

Through her expedition, she is raising money for Cancer Research UK.

Hughes’ arrival was announced on her Instagram and Twitter. She tweeted: “After 58.5 days of skiing I am standing at the Geographic South Pole as the youngest woman EVER to ski solo from the coast of Antarctica to the Pole!”

Hughes was not the only Brit to reach the South Pole today – the adventurer Jenny Davis completed her solo after over 43 days in Antarctica.

Her official time is still to be confirmed but it could be close with Wendy Searle who became the fourth-fastest woman to reach the Pole earlier in the week in just over 43 days. They had both been vying for the speed record of just under 39 days.

Davis’s arrival was announced on Instagram: “News Flash⁣!! Message received from Jenny in the early hours of this morning:⁣ ‘Guess who’s at the Pole!! A big push and arrived just after midnight x’⁣”.

Davis had been skiing at a world record pace for 500 miles of the 700-mile ski, but she developed a condition called polar thigh where thigh fat dies because of the wind. This slowed her down for the final push.

This was her second attempt after she had to abandon her first expedition due to illness. 

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Their ski started at Hercules Inlet on the coast of Antarctica and took them to the Geographical South Pole.

Hughes and Davis join an elite club, only seven other women before they have completed the solo unaided and unassisted, carrying all their supplies in a sledge behind them.

Hughes takes the record from Iceland’s Vilborg Gissuradottir who completed the challenge aged 32 in 2013.

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