Budding explorers inspired by Royal Navy Captain Robert Scott of the Antarctic, have had the chance to prove that they have got what it takes to follow in his footsteps during an exercise held at HMS Raleigh this week.
A group of 10 candidates have been short-listed to take part in the International Scott Centenary Expedition (ISCE) after entering a competition run by the expedition organizers and the Daily Telegraph.
The aim of the expedition is to visit Scott's last camp, where he and two other men perished from exposure and starvation 100 years ago. Two of Scott's comrades had died earlier in the mission.
At HMS Raleigh the candidates have undergone a series of exercises as part of the selection process, similar to those undertaken by the Royal Navy's newest recruits to test their mental and physical stamina.
Two finalists to join the expedition will eventually be chosen from the ongoing selection process, which plans to take the same route as the search party sent out to look for Captain Scott.
The group will start out in January 2012 and travel overland hauling supplies to reach the site, where relatives of the five doomed men will be flown in for a memorial service.
Captain Scott was born in the parish of Stoke Damerel in Plymouth and joined the Royal Navy in 1881 at the age of 13. As the Commanding Officer of HMS Discovery he had already taken part in a successful mission to Antarctica to explore and collect scientific data, before setting out on the ill-fated expedition in 1910 to reach the South Pole.
The International Scott Centenary Expedition is one of two planned to mark the 100th anniversary of Capt Scott's death. The British Armed Services will mount an expedition to Antarctica in late December 2011.
Made up of Royal Navy, Army and Royal Air Force personnel, the expedition intends to explore remote areas for scientific purposes and ascend previously unclimbed mountains. Information on the International Scott Centenary Expedition can be found at www.isce2012.co.uk.