ExWeb Antarctica 2005 kick-off: 4500 km kite-sled expedition

Posted: Oct 11, 2005 04:35 am EDT

ExWeb is kicking off the South Pole season with a 2 part introduction of a Grand Traverse of the white continent. Today, part 1: Power sledding poles less traveled.

Ramón Larramendi is leading a three-man team in a 4500km traverse across Eastern Antarctica, riding a kite-powered sled. After years of testing and improving the sled, Ramon is ready and convinced, It is fast, endurable, powerful, maneuverable, and clean, he told Explorersweb. <cutoff>

Tested in four Greenland traverses, the sled's - and Ramon's - ultimate goal is to complete the longest Antarctic un-motorized traverse ever, without resupplies.

<b>Through the other Poles</b>

The expedition aims beyond the usual true South Pole (of earth). Their goal is to traverse the Eastern side of the frozen continent, through two lesser-known Poles: The South Pole of Inaccessibility, and the Geomagnetic South Pole.

The South Pole of Inaccessibility is the furthest point from all coasts of Antarctica. The Geomagnetic Pole is a theoretical pole used by academics to monitor the overall effect of the world's magnetic fluxes. Because the earths magnetic poles are constantly in motion, this position is obtained by a mathematic average figure.

<b>Unsupported from the Antarctic plateau</b>

The team hopes to hit the ice from South Africa at Queen Maud Lands hills by November 3rd. The route is not yet fixed. The team will decide once on the ice which scientific base to head for pending conditions and logistic issues.

Ramón Larramendi, Ignacio Oficialdegui, and Juanma Viu will travel unsupported by resupplies. The sled will be loaded with gear, fuel and food for 85 days, communications and filming equipment and a set of 8 kites sized from 10 to 60 m2.

<b>Find part 2 of story in the links section below images.</b>

<i>Ramón Larramendi is a seasoned polar explorer. A pioneer in Spain, he started travelling to polar regions 20 years ago. In 1998 he reached the magnetic North Pole. In 1999 he skied to the North Pole from Cape Arktichevsky (with resupplies) as leader of a Spanish expedition. Shortly afterwards he circumnavigated the Artic circle in a three year, 14,000 km-long expedition, combining dog-sledging, skiing and kayaking. He has lived in the Arctic, mostly in Greenland for six years - and speaksthe Inuit language fluently. Currently he runs 'Tierras Polares', a polar trip agency in Spain.</i>

#Polar #feature








Ram&oacute;n Larramendi is leading a three-man team in a 4500km traverse across Eastern Antarctica, riding a kite-powered sled. After years of testing and improving the sled, Ramon is ready and convinced, It is fast, endurable, powerful, maneuverable, and clean, he told Explorersweb(click to enlarge).
Antarctica map of most common expedition start and finish points (click to enlarge).