February 2, 2016
We first heard of the amazing Doug Tumminello back in November 2015. We wanted to share his story while he was on his expedition, but life happens and we had to delay sharing his story. As of January 2016, Doug has completed his journey and has since returned home. Here is his story, as it first began.
The/Studio: Introduce yourself. Tell our readers a little bit about who you are!
Doug: My name is Doug Tumminello, and I live in Steamboat Springs, Colorado. I graduated from the United States Military Academy (West Point) in 1987 and then served on active duty in the U.S. Army as an infantry officer at Fort Carson, Colorado. Already an avid skier, I began rock and ice climbing in the Colorado mountains.
I graduated from the University of Denver College of Law in 1996. Since that time, I’ve been a practicing attorney.
The/Studio: You have accomplished so much. That’s very impressive! What is the story behind your product?
Doug: I’m on my way to Antarctica to attempt to ski from the coast at Hercules Inlet to the South Pole, a distance of about 750 miles. I’ll wear the custom expedition patch on my parka.
The/Studio: That sounds like quite the adventure. What made you decide to take this trip?
Doug: I’ve been interested in polar exploration and adventure since I was a small child, when I read about British explorer Ernest Shackleton’s expedition to, and escape from, Antarctica.
The/Studio: Is anyone going with you?
Doug: No, I’ll be solo, unsupported and unassisted. I’ll be carrying all of my supplies in a sled that will start out weighing about 200 lbs. Once I reach the South Pole I’ll have a plane pick me up to return to Chile.
The/Studio: That’s very brave, but exciting! How long is it expected to take?
Doug: I expect the ski to take 40-45 days. I’m taking supplies for 50 days.
The/Studio: Do you have any other excursions or trips planned after this one?
Doug: One at a time!
The/Studio: Hahaha…Any advice for someone who is interested in a trip like this?
Doug: Go for it! Undertake the proper training and gain the necessary experience, but if you want to do it, do it!
The/Studio: What type of legacy do you want to leave?
Doug: The risk of failure isn’t something that stops me and that fear of that risk does stop a lot of people. I’m not just talking about climbing mountains or whatever, the risk of failure just stops people in their tracks. I really do hope I demonstrate that you shouldn’t let that stop you—it’s just part of the deal. We learn through those failings.
When people go on expeditions really what they’re looking for is that sense of adventure and often in not making it to the top is where the real adventure happens. You really do get what you’re looking for so to speak, if you know what you’re looking for.
For more information on Doug’s expedition and to track his progress, visit www.southpolesolo.com
Thank you, Doug, for sharing your incredible adventure with us and most importantly for inspiring us. Welcome back!