The World Record

LEWIS CLARKE is the youngest person (male or female, any nationality) ever to ski from Antarctic Coast to the South Pole on the full route (1130km).  His record has been independently ratified by Guinness World Records and Adventure Stats.  

He was 16 years and 61 days when he arrived at the South Pole in January 2014.

[Please note some misleading and downright false claims are unfortunately made in the name of record breaking.  So please see a break down of youngest records below which is accurate to the best of our knowledge, also see ‘’ and Guinness World Records for independent and reliable polar record data] 

Lewis Ezra Clarke: date of birth 18th November 1997, Bristol, England.

AGE: 16 yrs and 61 days when reached the South Pole.

ANI guide: Carl Alvey

Date of start of expedition:  December 1st, 2013

Category of expedition: team of 2, unassisted (by vehicles, dogs, kites etc), supported (by food drops), coast to pole (1130km, 702 miles)

Date of finish of expedition: January 18th, 2014

Duration of expedition: 48 days

My aim is to I have become the youngest person ever of any nationality to ski overland from the Antarctic coast (Hercules Inlet) to the South Pole, a distance of 702 miles.  My expedition was supported (in that I collected 3 caches of food enroute) but unassisted (I was not  helped by dogs, kites, ponies or vehicles etc).  My world record attempt has been recognised by Guinness World Records and they state that the previous record holder was SARAH ANN MCNAIR-LANDRY. 

1] The record I have beaten is:  Youngest Person (male/female, any nationality) to ski-trek to South Pole from Hercules Inlet (the classic coast to pole route of 702 miles, 1130km)  SARAH ANN MCNAIR-LANDRY, Canadian, 2004.  Age 18 years (dob 9/5/1986).  Sarah was unsupported on her  journey whereas I will be supported with food drops, the significance is that her pulk may have been heavier than mine.  Both of us are unassisted (ie man, or woman power and skis only, no dogs, cars, kites etc).   Once arriving at the Pole Sarah was resupplied and kited back to Hercules inlet.

In terms of being the youngest person ever to ski-trek overland the entire 702 mile (1130km) classic journey from coast to pole, Sarah’s 2004 record  is the one I have beaten.

For information, there is a sensible lower age limit of 16 years for anyone attempting the full coast to South Pole routes:

2] Youngest Briton to ski to the South Pole from Hercules Inlet (702 miles) – BRYONY BALEN January 2012.  Age 21 years. (emergency assisted, unsupported).



3] Youngest person to ski a partial journey (112 miles) to the South Pole (flown to the start point) is AMELIA HEMPLEMAN-ADAMS, age 16 years (dob 1/6/1995) in 2011.

4] Youngest male to ski  to the South Pole, on a shorter than traditional coast to pole route  (314 miles), is PARKER LIAUTAUD , age 19 years (dob 12/8/1994), December 24th 2013 (assisted and supported by a truck and team filming the expedition).

5] JANEK MELA (dob 30.12.1988).  Polish. This young man’s claims have come to our attention, but haven’t been ratified by Guinness World Records/Adventure Stats.  He claims to have ? skied 117 miles to the South Pole in 2004, arriving aged 16 yrs 1 day.  It’s not clear if he was assisted/supported.  If it’s correct he may be the youngest person to ski a partial journey (117 miles) to the South Pole.

6] LUKE ROBERTSON, Scottish, aged 30 years.  First Scot and youngest solo, unassisted, unsupported British person to ski Hercules coast to pole, Jan 14th 2016.

7] JADE HAMEISTER (Australian, ? dob 5.6.2001) aims to be the youngest person to ski to the Two Poles and Greenland in 2017-18.   Unsupported and unassisted she is travelling with her father on a shorter than traditional Coast to South Pole route (600km compared to Clarke’s 1130km).  If she achieves it she will become the youngest to have skied the triple, but not “the youngestto the South Pole as Clarke was 16 yrs and 61 days on arrival and Hameister will be older by approximately six months.

8] Lieutenant SCOTT SEARS (UK, ?dob) aims to be become the youngest person to ski solo unsupported and unassisted the full 1130km route from Hercules Inlet to the South Pole in 2017-8.  He will be 27 years old.


  1. The youngest girl to reach both the South and North poles was Lindsey McIntosh in 2003. At age 12, she reached the South Pole on January 8, 2003 and was greeted by Jerry Marty of the Nation Science Foundation. This was followed by another expedition to reach the North Pole, and on April 17, 2003, she accomplished her goal of standing on the frozen North Pole. Lindsey, also flew a Citation C, private jet higher and faster than any other at that time. She was accompanied by her father.

    • Hi Richard. Thanks for letting us know about Lindsey’s polar achievements. To keep our site focussed, we’re formally referencing only South Pole youngest records and only those where the youngsters have skied a minimum of the final degree (60 miles or so). Thanks for your interest and I wonder if Lindsey is now a professional aviator? Sarah

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