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Adventure has been in Tom Avery's blood all his life. A pioneering polar adventurer, ski mountaineer and climber with many notable first ascents and ski descents to his name, Tom is one of the UK's foremost explorers. He has organised and led expeditions to all seven continents, but it is for his record-breaking polar journeys that he is best known.
Tom is part of an elite group of only nine people in history to have completed the polar trilogy; full-length South and North Pole expeditions and a coast-to-coast crossing of Greenland. He currently holds two Guinness World Records; the fastest surface journey to the North Pole and the fastest crossing of Greenland. He is also the youngest Briton to have reached both Poles.
"Avery is shaping up to join the ranks of such British immortals as Sir Ranulph Fiennes and Dame Ellen MacArthur"
The Sunday Times
Tom’s passion for adventure began when he first read about the exploits of Captain Scott as a seven-year-old boy. He soon took up climbing, first on rock in the British Isles, before moving on to snow, ice and higher altitude terrain. Tom has since organised and lead countless expeditions to the world's Greater Ranges, from first ascents in the Himalayas to an attempt to become the first Brit to ski down an 8,000-metre peak. A fascination with volcanoes has taken him to the highest peaks of the Andes, the African Rift Valley and the Pacific Ring of Fire - sometimes mid-eruption.
In 2002 Tom achieved his childhood dream and completed the perilous journey to the South Pole, manhauling his sledge and kite skiing more than 700 miles from the Antarctic coast for 45 days.
In 2005 Tom and his five-strong team electrified the exploration world by recreating Peary and Henson's controversial 1909 expedition to the North Pole, travelling with teams of Eskimo dogs and replica wooden sledges. Tom's ambitious aim was to prove the sceptics wrong and match Peary’s 37-day journey to the Pole. After an epic dash across the most unforgiving environment on the planet, Tom’s exhausted team rewrote the history books by making it to the Pole with only four hours to spare. More than a decade on, they remain the fastest team in history to reach the North Pole.
Tom's most recent challenge saw him breaking another Guinness World Record, this time for the fastest coast-to-coast crossing of Greenland in 2015. Using kites and pulling two sledges each, Tom and his three team mates smashed the previous record by more than a week, completing the crossing in just 9 days and 19 hours, with barely any sleep. During one night, the team kited an incredible 180 miles in 16 hours, the equivalent of travelling from London to Manchester.
After five years at Harrow School, Tom graduated from Bristol University with a degree in Geography and Geology. His highly acclaimed first book, Pole Dance, was released in 2003 and his second, To the End of the Earth, was published on both sides of the Atlantic in 2009. Tom was an official ambassador for the London 2012 Olympic Games and his expeditions have raised nearly £100,000 for charity, primarily The Prince's Trust. Tom is also a passionate environmentalist, a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society and a Member of the Explorers Club in New York. Tom has made many appearances on international TV and radio, in the newspapers and in the lifestyle press, for whom he is a regular contributor.
Tom is the co-founder and co-owner of Ski Verbier Exclusive which specialises in ski holidays to some of the most spectacular chalets in the Swiss Alps. He lives in the Cotswolds with his wife Mary and their three daughters Maud, Olive and Nell.