Antarctica update: Gamme holding at Hercules Inlet, Sebastian and Eric traverse done

Antarctica update: Gamme holding at Hercules Inlet, Sebastian and Eric traverse done

Posted: Jan 24, 2012 02:53 pm EST

(ExplorersWeb) "Aleksander has now arrived at Hercules Inlet after 87 days on the ice," the Norwegian skier's home team reported this morning. Holding one kilometer from the coast, Aleks is waiting for Jonesy and Cas who hope to get there on Thursday.

Soloing 2270km in 87 days without airdrops or kites, Gamme set a new world record at Antarctica and was expected at the finish line yesterday. However, he decided to wait for Australians Cas & Jonesy, out on a similar mission, to take the last steps together with them.

"The Australian skiers hoped to bag a world's first by completing a return trip from Hercules Inlet to the Pole and back - until Aleks showed up," said Aleksander's home team member Maria Philippa Rossi. "A veteran from several Greenland crossings though, Aleksander has skied faster that the guys 'from down under'."

The question now though is if the Aussies are too far from Aleks. Less than 120km from Hercules Inlet yesterday, it is a tough final run for the two, beat up and skiing without kites.

Gamme didn't reach Hercules Inlet alone today: Kiting in from Novo on the other side of the continent, via first the Pole of Inaccessibility and then the Geographical Pole; Sebastian Copeland and Eric McNair got a final push by the winds and kited their last 200+ km to Hercules Inlet in less than two days.

Antarctica/SP - General facts:

Gateway port Cape Town, South Africa:
To ALCI/TAC base camp Novolazarevskaya / Novo
(70o 46'37S", 011o 49'26"E)
Gateway port Punta Arenas, Chile, South America:
To ALE/ANI base camp, Union Glacier
(79o 45'S, 083o 14'W).
Gateway port Punta Christchurch, New Zealand:
To US base McMurdo
(77o 50'39"S, 166o 40'22"E)

1 nautical mile (nm) = 1.852 km
1 nm = 1.151 statute mile
1 knot = 1.852 km/h
1 degree of Latitude is 110 km

Sastrugi are hard snow bumps and can be as high as 10 feet.
A nunatak is a peak of a mountain rising above the ice cap; sometimes covered with snow, sometimes exposed rock.

Useful links:

CONTACT 5 expedition technology
Polar rules of Adventure
What is solo?
Hercules Inlet start point
2011-12 Guidelines for NGO Visitors to the South Pole Station
South Pole Station news (Bill Spindler)
Antarctic Logistics and Expeditions (ALE)
Adventure Network International (ANI)
The Antarctic Company (TAC/ALCI)


Wx7 observations at Union Glacier

Amundsen's & Scott's diaries
Amundsen's book, "The South Pole"
Amundsen's diary courtesy Fram Museum
Amundsen pix, courtesy Fram Museum
Scott's diary

Space research expedition dispatches

ANSMET Meteorite hunters

List of Links to Antarctica 2011-12 teams
Classifications: Unassisted (no airdrops), unsupported (no kites/dogs/motor).

Hercules Inlet - SP - Hercules Inlet

Unassisted, unsupported:
Aleksander Gamme, Norway (solo)
Australian James Castrission and Justin Jones (Cas & Jonesy - return)

Assisted (airdrops):
Polar Explorers
Byrony Balen (With PolarExplorers)

Ross Ice Shelf - SP - Hercules Inlet

Assisted (airdrops)

Felicity Aston, UK (solo)

Ronne-Filchner Ice Shelf - SP

Assisted (airdrops), supported (kites)
Pole to Pole Run Pat Farmer

Novolazarevskaya - SP - traverses

Supported (kites):
Dixie Dansercoer and Sam Deltour
Eric McNair-Landry and Sebastian Copeland

Novolazarevskaya - SP (kites)
Johan Ernst Nilson

#Polar #topstory

Sebastian Copeland.
courtesy Sebastian Copeland, SOURCE
Aleks at the South Pole. Halfway there.
courtesy Aleksander Gamme, SOURCE