Imagine skiing 2600 km pulling 200 kg sleds with all your supplies over 110 days in arctic conditions to collect critical Antarctic climate data and inspire the community to reach their goals. Would you have what it takes?

Countdown to the ice

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We are proud to be supporting The Last Great First – an epic 110 day expedition that is many things – a history-making, incredible undertaking that pushes the boundaries of what’s possible, an initiative that supports the community and an opportunity to collect data for climate scientists.

Training & Preparation

Svalbard training expedition video courtesy of The Last Great First

Why it matters to us

The Last Great First’s expedition spirit and goals align with our values and our pursuit of remarkable experiences – what we call Reach for Remarkable – for our people, clients and communities. Supporting this initiative is important to us for a few reasons:

Climate change has become the most pressing and important issue for most Australians and the world – as well as our people. The expedition is a chance to support and drive positive climate action for future generations.

The Last Great First explorers, Drs Gareth and Richard, are determined to inspire people of all ages to reach for their personal and community aspirations. As former Scouts themselves, they are collaborating with over 50 million Scouts worldwide to empower young people, their leaders, families and supporters. This aligns with our commitment to support organisations focused on the development of our younger generation. We encourage our people to pursue the greater good for the communities in which we live and operate, whether that is local community issues happening right now or a global focus with an eye to the future.

Though it is a well-used phrase, it is a true one – our people are our most important asset. Our brand promise, Reach for Remarkable, means we are committed to providing a remarkable experience for our people and push them to be the best they can be for themselves, their teams, their clients and communities. The Last Great First gives us a chance for our people to be involved in an initiative that drives climate change, supports the community and inspires them to reach their goals.

About the explorers

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Dr Gareth Andrews

Dr Gareth Andrews was born on the Isle of Mull during one of the coldest Scottish Winters on record – a year when the sea outside our home in Bunessan froze solid. His mum jokes that it was a sign of things to come. When he’s not working in the hospital, he loves to spend my time exploring Sydney’s beaches and bushland with his young family.  

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Dr Richard Stephenson

Dr Richard Stephenson grew up in Yorkshire but moved to New Zealand 10 years ago to make his home amongst the wild mountains and forests of the beautiful country.

What it means to them

Explorer Ernest Shackleton called the crossing of Antarctica ‘the last great adventure in the history of South Polar exploration’.

This is the last great journey from the Golden Age of polar exploration.

The Last Great First will attempt to redress what history has not yet relinquished – a full unsupported coast to coast ski crossing of Antarctica.

The expedition objectives

  • Climate – to collect 110 days of critical Antarctic climate data for world scientists
  • Crossing – to be the first people in history to ski unsupported across the whole of Antarctica
  • Community – to inspire all people to reach for their goals and community aspirations

How you can get involved

Stay tuned for a chance to get involved in our initiatives and challenges over the course of the year. If you'd like to know more about the expedition, visit The Last Great First.

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