In the year 2005 Ann left England to in a bid to become the first woman to ski solo from the Russian pack ice. It took 19 days to travel through Russia as permits were given and then rescinded as she travelled from town to town, sometimes being forced to share hotel rooms with total strangers as she worked her way towards Siberia. Eventually all permits were received and Ann left from the Russian pack ice, thinking all her troubles were over.
During her first day alone, she encountered 3 polar bears and was stalked by a large male bear for 5 days. This was the ultimate test for Ann who considers this, her most frightening and difficult encounter on the arctic ocean, is also her most precious memory and achievement. Her ethos that when we overcome our most difficult challenges we grow and become stronger led her to commissioning a silver polar bear necklace which she always wears to remind her that no matter what life may throw her way she can endure it and come out the other side all the better for the challenge
Despite the low temperatures, encounters with five polar bears, one storm and very difficult ice conditions Ann battled through and completed over 124 nautical miles of the journey before hearing the tragic news that the Russian authorities were once again removing the necessary permits and all expeditions on the ice that year were removed without warning. Although Ann did not reach the pole on this occasion she sees it as one of life’s adventures, full of people, mystery and surprise. She has no regrets and learnt much from this journey that she built on for her future Polar endeavours.