Why Tom Crean’s Footsteps? - Polar Maidens
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Why Tom Crean’s Footsteps?


During this expedition, the team will be finishing the journey that was started by renowned explorer, Tom Crean. Grandfather to one of our Polar Maidens, Aileen Crean O’Brien. And one of the most inspirational men from the last century.


Tom Crean was part of Scott’s 1910 – 13 Terra Nova expedition (named after their ship). Scott had scientific and geographical objectives and wanted to be the first to the South Pole. But was sadly beaten by a month by Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen.


Crean’s heroic exploits on the ice led to him being awarded the Albert Medal for lifesaving.


On 4 January 1912, when Scott reached 87°32’S 168 statute miles from the South Pole, he selected a final eight men to carry on the journey. Crean was not one of these men.


Crean wept with disappointment at the prospect of having to turn back so close to the goal!


Knowing this story and having been to the North Pole herself, Jan Meek was determined to finish Crean’s journey. It is perfect that she is now partnering with Crean’s granddaughter to achieve this.


Jan put together a team of ‘ordinary’ women. Ordinary meaning that they are not soldiers or professional extreme sportswomen.


They are women living ordinary lives, with regular jobs, who have a passion for adventure and are trying to push their normal boundaries. They’re becoming #womenlessordinary.


By reaching the South Pole a century later, the women are achieving Tom’s goal, as well as demonstrating how far women have come since the 1900’s in terms of physical strength and spirit. In that era, the idea of women contemplating this expedition would have been unheard of.

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