Due to storms, the beginning of the Walking with the Wounded Antarctic journey will be postponed for at least 24 hours. Prince Harry and the WWTW team will be spending some extra time in a warmer climate before heading to Novo Airbase in Russia.
The team and their Royal patron arrived in Cape Town, South Africa on Monday, after an overnight flight from London. Due to strong winds they will stay in Cape Town until given the clearance to fly.
“Their flight to Novo has now been delayed by at least 24 hours due to poor weather conditions in Antarctica. The teams will remain in Cape Town until the weather has improved,” according to a Palace spokesperson.
The Russian air base is close to Novolazarevskaya Station, which is located near the edge of the Antarctic. There the three teams from the United Kingdom, United States and the Commonwealth will acclimatise to the vast change in elevation as well as the sub-zero temperatures.
The projected start of the race is 29 November with the goal of reaching the South Pole on or around 17 December.
This past Wednesday, Her Majesty met with Harry and the WWTW team at Buckingham Palace. On Thursday, Harry and WWTW team members launched the South Pole Allied Challenge in Trafalgar Square.
“This trip is another way of reminding everybody that as Afghanistan draws down and these guys aren’t in the news any more… the support must continue,” commented Harry in The Daily Mail.
The teams will cover approximately 15km to 20km per day; will face temperatures that will be -45°C and endure 50mph winds all as they pull their 70kg or more sledges.
WWTW’s goal is to raise awareness of the incredible courage, daily struggle and fierce determination of wounded servicemen and women. It is also to raise money to help assist in career placement and job training for the wounded and sick who are no longer serving.
The three teams will raise money and be representatives for their respective charities. The United Kingdom for WWTW, Australia for Soldier On, the United States for Soldiers to Summits and Canada for Soldier on.
In 2011, Harry was patron of the WWTW North Pole journey and participated for a few days with the team on their journey. He was also patron of the 2012 expedition to Mount Everest.