A record breaker who has become the youngest woman to ski solo from the coast of Antarctica to the South Pole will tell an audience in Dunfermline about her adventures.
Mollie Hughes, 29, will speak at an event organised by the Royal Scottish Geographical Society (RSGS) next month.
After 58 days of skiing alone in whiteouts, storm-force winds and temperatures hitting minus 45C, Mollie reached the pole on January 10.
The adventurer and motivational speaker, who was born in Devon and now lives in Edinburgh, started her world record attempt on November 13 at Hercules Inlet in Western Antarctica and skied a total of 702 miles.
She said: “It’s a surreal feeling.
“I can’t quite believe I’ve done it. I knew it would be hard but this has been an exceptionally tough experience, especially in the first two weeks when I was struggling through the whiteout. That really tested my resilience, especially as I was all alone, but I managed to get through it and carry on.
“I feel really fortunate not to have experienced any major disasters knowing what can happen in these challenging conditions.
“Christmas Day away from my girlfriend and family was hard too, as was my Spotify needing rebooted after 30 days which obviously wasn’t possible.”
Having initially hoped to reach the South Pole by New Year’s Day, her quest was almost derailed by severe weather in the first two weeks but Molly battled on pulling a sled weighing 16 stones and skiing alone for between 10 and 12 hours a day.
To sustain her energy levels, she consumed around 4,500 calories per day, more than twice the average daily amount for a woman, with her favourites including Snickers bars and freeze-dried spaghetti bolognese, which was her Christmas dinner.
Despite this, she lost more than two stones in weight during her expedition.
She takes the world record from previous holder Vilborg Gissuradottir from Iceland, who completed the challenge in 2013 aged 32.
The feat means Hughes now holds two world records. In 2017, aged 26, she became the world’s youngest person to climb both the north and south sides of Mount Everest.
Mike Robinson, RSGS chief executive, said: “We’re delighted that Mollie will be speaking for the RSGS so soon after returning from her expedition.
“She joins a remarkable cast of adventure greats who did the same after their heroic achievements.
“Mollie visited our offices before heading off to Antarctica to seek inspiration, advice and approval for her expedition. She took with her one of our RSGS explorers’ flags, so we’re looking forward to seeing a picture of it flying proudly on Earth’s most southerly point.”
Hughes will give a talk in Dunfermline High School at 7.30pm on Wednesday February 5. Tickets are available on the door.