Lily Green to conquer Mt. Worsley

Published 7 August 2023
Lily Green, 20, grew up being lovingly “forced” into rock-climbing by her dad, a rock-climbing instructor. Now, Lily Green is etching her name into the annals of history as a vital member of an 8-man team, aiming to achieve a momentous feat - becoming the world's second group to conquer Mt. Worsley. This majestic peak bears the prestigious name of one of New Zealand's most illustrious explorers, Frank Worsley. The mountain received its name as a tribute to Worsley, the revered New Zealand captain who played a pivotal role in Sir Ernest Shackleton’s illustrious Imperial Trans-Antarctic Expedition, a daring endeavor to cross the Antarctic continent.

Being outdoors and climbing is second nature to Lily. Having grown up with a rock-climbing family, she says, “I found a love for it in my teenage years, and it just stuck.” Currently, Lily has a couple of jobs that she feels has prepared her for the expedition. One of them being a rock-climbing instructor with her dad and the other working at a climbing gym in Dunedin. In terms of education, Lily said that her qualifications in rock-climbing and abseiling through Te Mahi Ako is what has prepared her significantly, especially with safety knowledge, “I’ve been doing my qualification for a year and a half, coming to a closing date now. It’s totally helped me build my experience in rock climbing instruction. I’ve been learning lots of new things that I never thought I’d have to learn but it’s good…lots of stuff about the weather, thinking about risks and hazards, it’s important, good, stuff to know.”

Part of Lily’s abseiling and rock-climbing apprenticeship involves “basically having to do a couple of assessments where you’re setting up anchors and teaching a session. It’s really cool, creating your own adventure with lots of people and learning to assess the risks and the weather so that the people you are teaching remain safe”.

When asked about how she felt after being selected for this history-making expedition, Lily said that she was “actually working that day, and knew I was going to be getting a phone call, I was so nervous the entire day. I was beyond happy when I got the call, I can’t even explain it to be honest – I’ve never had that feeling before.”

At present, Lily is preparing for her expedition departure at the end of September. She stated, “I’ll need to get really fit, an hour of exercise a day, as well as going out on mountain trips which is hard because there’s not enough snow.” When asked if Lily was having to prepare for acclimatising to the mountain, she replied that the elevation is pretty standard and that “the main thing we need to worry about is the conditions…we need to prepare for anything that’s thrown at us.” Having almost completed her abseiling and rock-climbing qualification, Lily feels more prepared when assessing those risks.

“The climb is going to be pretty epic; first, we fly to Chile, then the Falkland Islands, and finally, it’s a 2-3-day journey on the boat to South Georgia. The whole expedition itself is a 3-week endeavor, with 10 days dedicated to activities around and on South Georgia."

Here at Te Mahi Ako, we wish Lily and her team all the best in their historic climb and exploration of South Georgia.