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Prince Harry & Military Vets Reach South Pole in Charity Expedition

Prince Harry during Walking with the Wounded's South Pole Challenge
Prince Harry and his teammates in the Walking with the Wounded's South Pole challenge successfully reached the South Pole on Dec. 13, 2013, after spending two weeks trekking across Antarctica. (Image credit: Walking with the Wounded)

Prince Harry and a group of military veterans have reached the South Pole, after a grueling 200-mile-long (335 kilometers) trek across Antarctica for charity.

Three teams of wounded military veterans and their celebrity teammates participated in the South Pole challenge, which was organized by Walking with the Wounded, a charity based in the United Kingdom that supports men and women who were injured during military service.

Prince Harry and his team successfully reached the South Pole earlier today (Dec. 13), at 7:48 a.m. EST (12:48 p.m. GMT), race organizers confirmed.

"[I]'m so privileged to be here with all these guys and girls, and well done to Ed and Dags and everyone who's organized this, what an amazing accomplishment," Prince Harry said in a statement. "I think we'll be having a few whiskies tonight and then everyone's looking forward to getting home. Mission success."

Three teams participated in the Walking with the Wounded's South Pole challenge. (Image credit: Walking with the Wounded)

The two-week South Pole challenge was designed to raise money for injured servicemen and women, by demonstrating their extraordinary courage and determination, Walking with the Wounded officials have said.

Twelve wounded military vets made up three teams: the U.K.'s Team Glenfiddich, the United States' Team Noom Coach, and Team Soldier On of the Commonwealth (Australia and Canada).

The soldiers were also joined by celebrity teammates: Prince Harry, who is a member of Britain's armed forces himself, participated with the U.K.'s team; actor Alexander Skarsgard, from the HBO series "True Blood," was a member of the American team; and actor Dominic West, who starred in the TV show "The Wire," was a member of the Commonwealth's team.

The teams traveled roughly 10 to 12 miles (15 to 20 km) each day, battling strong winds and bone-chilling temperatures that dipped as low as minus 30 degrees Fahrenheit (minus 35 degrees Celsius). The expedition was intended to be a race to the South Pole, but the event's organizers suspended the competitive aspect due to unexpectedly harsh Antarctic conditions.

The participants underwent extensive training in preparation for the South Pole challenge. The team members completed cold-weather training in Iceland in March, team training throughout the summer, and a final round of snow preparation in October before departing for Antarctica.

Follow Denise Chow on Twitter @denisechow. Follow LiveScience @livescience, Facebook & Google+. Original article on LiveScience.

Denise Chow
Denise Chow

Denise Chow was the assistant managing editor at Live Science before moving to NBC News as a science reporter, where she focuses on general science and climate change. Before joining the Live Science team in 2013, she spent two years as a staff writer for, writing about rocket launches and covering NASA's final three space shuttle missions. A Canadian transplant, Denise has a bachelor's degree from the University of Toronto, and a master's degree in journalism from New York University.