While the planning around the multiple moving pieces and logistical complications of the Scott Expedition took place over a decade, Saunders says the final year is the make-or-break crunch time. It involves an intense mix of physical training – about 20 hours a week during the peak period – mental preparation, and cobbling together as much relevant experience as he and L'Herpiniere can cram in without actually being able to set foot in Antarctica.
"We went to the kind of wilder corners of the U.K. – Scotland, Wales, Devon – as well as to Switzerland and France to the Alps," says Saunders. The goal was to replicate as closely as possible the extreme conditions they'll encounter at the South Pole. The duo also made use of Land Rover's Cold Climate Chamber, which houses artificial snow-covered terrain and a frozen lake for testing out the company's vehicles.