ALICE MORRISON TO WALK THE LENGTH OF THE SAHARA DESERT

Craghoppers Ambassador and BBC 2 presenter, Alice Morrison, is preparing for her hardest expedition yet across the largest desert in the world. The 2,000km walk across the Sahara will record the effects of climate change on The Sahrawis people.

Alice will walk with five camels and three local guides to explore this virtually unknown part of the desert. The team departs on the 26th November and expects the walk to take three months.

Alice said, “I will be tracking the deathstalker scorpion, hunting for meteorites, investigating the unique sand statues of the south, and searching for the lost great bird monuments which lie hidden in the dunes.

“Vipers and scorpions are common in the region and their bites and stings can cause death. We will be equipped with anti-venom medicine, but this doesn’t work for every species. Vitally, I and the team will be recording what is happening to The Sahrawis peoples and the environment of the Sahara as the world heats up.

In the last 100 years, the Sahara has expanded its territory by 10%, eating into arable land as desertification spreads. Desertification is one of the greatest environmental challenges of our time and climate change is making it worse”.

“Vipers and scorpions are common in the region and their bites and stings can cause death. We will be equipped with anti-venom medicine, but this doesn’t work for every species.”

The team risks running out of water as there are no official maps to show where the wells are located. They will follow the Nomads grazing routes in hope to find grazing for the camels, but if climate change has taken hold, Alice and her guides will need to buy in supplies.

Alice added, “Extreme temperatures will be one of the greatest challenges myself and the team will face. Rainfall is virtually non-existent, there are no clouds, with bright sunshine over 91% of the time and the highest average daily temperature of 47 °C or 117 °F has been recorded here.

But that is not the worst of it, sand and ground temperatures are even more extreme and can easily reach 80 °C or 176 °F in the daytime, which is hell on the feet. Coupled with the heat is extreme cold at night-time. Temperatures will plummet to below freezing after sunset”.