Seven women, including an Indian, on a 900 km Antarctic ski trek reached the South Pole on Thursday, 38 days after they began their adventure to mark the 60th anniversary of the founding of the Commonwealth.

“I’m incredibly proud of the team and I think ... if we can do this then you can do anything that you like to and that’s the message that we really want to send to everyone,” team leader Felicity Aston said in a message from South Pole on Thursday.

Skiing six to 10 hours a day, the Commonwealth Women’s Antarctic Expedition trekked an average of 24 kilometres a day, each hauling a 80 kilogram sled of provisions and shelter to reach the United States-operated Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station science base.

The expedition comprised women from Brunei, Cyprus, Ghana, India, New Zealand, Singapore and Britain.

The group faced blinding blizzards, winds in excess of 130 km an hour, hidden crevasses and temperatures that plummeted to minus 40 degrees Celsius, its Website said.

“We’re all incredibly happy and we’re standing here, seven women at the bottom of the planet, with biggest smiles on our faces right now,” Aston said.

They will then be airlifted from the pole back to their starting point, a commercial expedition base at Patriot Hills in east Antarctica, near the bottom of South America, and then to fly back to London via Chile.