No ski experience but Craig ready for the snow and ice of Hardangervidda

Published Monday, 13th March 2023
Craig skinner h s1 crop

Craig Skinner heads to the snow and ice of the Norwegian Hardangervidda having never put a set of skis on in his life, and he admits it’s going to be a challenge.

But the 23-year-old trooper in the King’s Royal Hussars is relishing the 65 Degrees North challenge he has been set as one of six WIS (wound, injured and sick) servicemen and women chosen to ski 140km across the Hardangervidda plateau during a six-day mission.

Craig, who is from Weymouth, was selected for the expedition having been diagnosed with PTSD, something he suffers from after having been in care for 10 years before joining the forces.

“My problem is that I start things in my life but never finish them and that is reflected in being in the care system and going from school to school without ever feeling settled,” he revealed.

“It is a massive honour to be chosen by 65DN for this mission and it is something that I can look to complete - I know I haven’t skied before and it is going to be a huge challenge, but one I’m really looking forward to.

“It could be a long six or seven days but it’s the sort of mental and physical challenge I need and it will be the last thing I do before leaving the army.

“The reason I’m leaving the army after four years is that I just feel I want some time to myself, settle down in one place.

“Once I have done that I will be looking to rejoin the army at some stage.

“But at the moment I’m just looking forward to getting out to Norway and getting on the skis.”

The group set out on their mission on Friday March 17 and and are expected to complete the challenge on March 22.

The Team will consists of: Georgie Smith, Ruth Lanckham, Craig Skinner, Lee Spencer, Sean Gane and Ray Evans, with the Support Team including: George Matthews (Team Leader), Billy Baxter, Ross Matthews, Ben Clark (Team Doctor).

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