Raising funds for cancer awareness in the cold
Antarctic runners kick of Relay for LifeRACHEL YOUNG
Several people battled snow flurries and below freezing Antarctica temperatures to raise awareness for the Cancer Society this weekend.
Staff from Antarctica New Zealand Scott Base and the New Zealand Defence Force ran and walked constantly from 7pm yesterday until 7am today to kick off the the Cancer Society of New Zealand's Relay For Life season.
The relay is a global campaign involving more than 20 countries to raise awareness and funds to help cancer support services, education and research.
The 35 participants completed 139 laps of the 1.65 kilometre course in 12 hours.
The track started inside the Hillary Field Centre then climbed straight up a hill behind the base, with bamboo flags bearing Cancer Society messages to inspire them to keep moving in the -11degC weather.
The final leg of the track led back inside the centre where they tagged another walker or runner in by passing them a baton.
The batons used during this relay will be returned to New Zealand for use in the regional events, which will take place between February 16 and March 31 in 21 communities.
An Antarctica New Zealand spokeswoman said it was as the sun did not set at this time of year it was particularly poignant and was truly representative of the journey of surviving cancer.
In total, they covered 229kms and a vertical climb of 12.510 metres.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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