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When you spend a large amount of time in extreme conditions, doing extreme things, it is not long before you start to hear about other people who have done similar things well before your time.
It was one such person, Sir Ernest Henry Shackleton that Baz Gray came across whilst serving on the Royal Navy’s Antarctic patrol vessel HMS Endurance in 2005. Of course, Baz had heard of him before, but it was not until 2005 that he really started to understand him and research him further.
Standing in Antarctica on an extremely severe weather day really puts things into perspective. To do this and be lucky enough to be standing where Shackleton was 95 years earlier was truly inspiring. It is tough enough with full modern clothing and a full support team let alone to be alone with absolutely no hope of rescue and very minimal and inadequate equipment.
In 2013 Baz was to become part of a six-man team that would successfully re-enact the very journey Shackleton and five other men would embark on to rescue the remaining 22 men left on the very small and extremely inhospitable Elephant Island. It would be a journey of 800 miles across the roughest ocean on the planet to South Georgia. They would then have to cross the intrepid internal mountains of South Georgia to Stromness harbour.
The original journey was famously described by Sir Edmond Hillary as “One of the most remarkable stories of survival ever told”
The Discovery Documentary, “Shackleton Death or Glory” was made in order to tell the story of this successful modern-day adventure.
Since then Baz has remained a huge fan, not only Shackleton but the entire Heroic Age of Exploration and is a regular speaker in schools and many other venues on the subject. He is very close to the Shackleton family and the Hon Alexandra Shackleton is delighted to be Baz’s Patron for a second time.
Below you can read about one of Baz’s true inspirations.