Bayly off to North Pole

The Herald reports:

National MP is aiming to be one of a select few to reach both the North and South poles.

The MP for Hunua and avid mountaineer sets off next week to “complete the double” – a 10-day, 120km trek to the northernmost point of the earth.

Fewer than 50 people are believed to have achieved the feat, beginning with English explorer Robert Swan in 1989.

An amazing achievement if he does it.

The MP, a former British and New Zealand soldier, was not deterred by the death of experienced English explorer Henry Worsley in Antarctica in January. Worsley caught an infection while trying to cross the continent alone.

“He was a really strong, hard nut, but he just literally walked himself to death,” Mr Bayly said. “He pushed himself excessively. You’ve just got to be prepared to say no.”

The problem is your decline can be incremental, so you don’t realise how bad a shape you are in.

Accompanied by his eldest son James, 20, and an expedition guide, he will be pulling a 40kg sled through the snow. To train for the expedition, he has been dragging a car tyre, named “Ted”, along rural roads in his Hunua electorate.

“When you’re out walking for that length of time around Karaka … you get some pretty odd looks and you build up an affinity towards your travelling partner,” he said.

Maybe the tyre could stand for Labour in Hamilton West 🙂

Mr Bayly is using the trip to raise $10,000 for the preservation of kokako, an endangered native bird found in the Hunua Ranges.

Sure there must be easier ways to fundraise!

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