Mr. Swan and two other guys accomplished the longest unsupported march in history, a 70-day, 900-mile expedition to the South Pole in 1986. Three years later, he trekked 700 miles to the North Pole with a crew of seven others, becoming what he calls "the first person crazy enough to walk to both poles."
The distance you can walk in a day depends on how many steps you take per minute. If you take 10,000 steps per hour, that's 160 miles; if you can manage 12,000 steps per hour, that's 200 miles; if you can walk for 3 hours per day for 5 days per week, you can walk 125 miles.
The actual distance you travel depends on how long you stay out walking each day. After five days, you would have walked 50 miles. At this rate, you could walk from London to Istanbul in 80 days. But most people wouldn't be able to walk that much each day because it requires a lot of energy. They would need to sleep at least eight hours every night.
If you made it to the South Pole and back again, you could walk up to 740 miles in 20 days. That's about 40 miles per day, which is quite an accomplishment considering the amount of time you were standing up all day long.
The average person needs about 10,000 steps per hour to maintain their weight.
As the crow flies, the distance between the North Pole and the South Pole is approximately 20,014 kilometers (12,416 miles). It would be 12,800 kilometres (7900 miles) if one could go right through the planet. N.B. This figure includes aerial distance over ice and snow.
The actual distance between the North Pole and the South Pole is much greater because one must travel across the Arctic Ocean and Antarctic continent, which are both more than 5 million square kilometers (2 million sq mi) in area. The journey would take about 100 days to complete if made without stopping.
The distance between the North Pole and the South Pole is so great that it takes months for messages to pass back and forth between them.
In fact, the last message from the South Pole was sent on New Year's Eve 1980 and received at the North Pole two weeks later on January 15th 1981. During that time frame, temperatures varied between -80°C and 20°C, so communication equipment would have been well-suited for use during winter months.
It's important to note that the phrase "the north pole" and "the south pole" have specific meanings here. The term "north" is used to describe anything that is closer to the Earth's axis of rotation, while the word "south" refers to any object that is farther away from this axis.
"The North Pole is easily 10 times tougher than Everest or the South Pole," says Eric Larsen in an ExWeb interview.
Larsen has been a scientist at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California, since 1996. He says that while it would be possible for someone with proper equipment and knowledge to reach either pole, it would be extremely difficult and dangerous. The North Pole is particularly tough to reach because of intense cold and wind conditions, while the South Pole can only be reached by hardened adventurers who know how to survive in hostile environments for long periods of time.
Both poles are being actively researched by scientists interested in physics, biology, climate change, and other topics. Some research teams actually work at both poles during different seasons or years.
The idea behind this kind of research is to collect data over a long period of time in order to better understand how our planet works and what we can do to protect it.
There are no phones or computers at either pole, so researchers must transport their materials from the location where they are collected to laboratories back home. This usually involves shipping the material by ice road or air (if possible) since there is no other way to get it back.