Maria Leijerstam in the Cycle Race for the South Pole

Posted: Nov 26, 2013 05:38 pm EST

 

 

(By Correne Coetzer) While Juan Menendez Granados and Daniel Burton are waiting in Punta Arenas, Chile, for the weather to clear in Antarctica to start their 1130 km cycle attempts, British lady cyclist, Maria Leijerstam (35), has officially launched her expedition to attempt to cycle to the South Pole. 

 

Earlier this year Maria told ExplorersWeb that this expedition has been a plan in the making over the last 2 years and she will be using a recumbent tricycle. Today she has official launched her expedition.

 

Maria plans to arrive in Cape Town, South Africa, on December 10/11, she told ExWeb, and fly with TAC/ALCI to Novolazarevskaya about a week later (weather permitting). From there Maria will fly to the South Pole where she will meet her Arctic Trucks support team, who will drive her to her start point at the bottom of the Leverett Glacier on the Ross Ice Shelf. During her cycle journey, the car team will drive close by and give necessary support, explains Arctic Trucks. A cameraman in the car will film the expedition to make a film to be sold afterwards. 

 

The start point at the Leverett Glacier is at about 85ºS, which, in a straight line is 550 km from the Geographic South Pole. Maria plans to cover the distance in 20 days, according to her website, “breaking only for a few hours to power nap every 18 hours.” The weight she will carry on her tricycle calculates to “over 45 kg of equipment, most of which will be food, fuel and cycle spares.”

 

Together with “a team of experts in the cycling, polar, fitness and nutrition fields”, Maria has been working extensively with Arctic Trucks in Iceland to organize, plan and prepare her expedition.  According to Arctic Trucks, her vehicle support team members are Emil Grímsson, CEO of Arctic Trucks, who also took part in Top Gear´s expedition to the Magnetic North Pole, and Torfi Jóhannsson, a weather station specialist and an experienced mountaineer. 

 

Juan Menendez Granados and Daniel Burton will attempt to cycle 1130 km, independent from each other. Daniel will be resupplied, but Juan still have to decide if he will get assistance. They won’t have car support.

 

Previous/Related: 

 

South Pole ski update: Geoff Wilson through crevasse minefields; Waiting game in Punta Arenas

 

ExWeb interview with Juan Menendez Granados: the greatest challenge

 

ExWeb South Pole kick-off interview: Daniel Burton, return cycle journey

 

The Cycle Race for the South Pole: Girl power, Kate Leeming

 

Arctic, Antarctica, Greenland and Baikal icebiking: Make your own

 

ExWeb interview with Eric Philips, three decades of polar experience

 

AdventureStats and Polar Rules

 

Antarctic Logistics Centre International (ALCI) / TAC

 

Maria Leijerstam’s pages:

Website

Twitter

YouTube

Tracker

  

Gateway port Cape Town, South Africa: 

To ALCI /TAC base camp Novolazarevskaya / Novo 

70° 46’37”S, 011° 49’26”E 

 

Gateway port Punta Arenas, Chile, South America: 

To ALE/ANI base camp, Union Glacier 

79° 45'S, 083° 14'W

 

Hercules Inlet is located at 80°S near Union Glacier, 1130 km from the Geographic South Pole.

The bottom of the Leverett Glacier, at the Ross Ice Shelf, is located at about 85ºS, a distance of 550 km from the Geographic South Pole.

 

1 nautical mile (nm) = 1.852 km

1 nm = 1.151 miles

1 knot = 1.852 km/h

1 degree of Latitude is 110 km / 60 nm / 70 miles

Sastrugi are hard snow bumps and can be as high as 10 feet

A nunatak is a top of a mountain visible above the snow surface.

 

South Pole of Inaccessibility 2011-12 position: 

S82°06.696, E055°01.951

Geographic South Pole: 90 degrees South

 

#Polar #southpole2013 #southpole2013-14 #antarctica #cyclesouthpole #cyclesouthpole2013  #MariaLeijerstam

 

 

 

 

 

Maria Leijerstam and her Tricycle practicing in Iceland.
courtesy Ryan Edy, SOURCE
Video.
courtesy Maria Leijerstam , SOURCE
Maria plans to cover the distance ( approx. 550 km) from the bottom of the Leverett Glacier in 20 days.
courtesy Ryan Edy, SOURCE
While traveling, she plans breaking only for a few hours to power nap every 18 hours.
courtesy Ryan Edy, SOURCE
The weight she will carry on her tricycle calculates to over 45 kg of equipment, most of which will be food, fuel and cycle spares.
courtesy Ryan Edy, SOURCE
Maria crevasse training. She has been training for this expedition in Siberia (Lake Baikal), Norway and Iceland.
courtesy Ryan Edy, SOURCE
Maria training in Iceland, a plan in the making over the last 2 years.
courtesy Ryan Edy, SOURCE
One of Arctic Trucks' vehicles will serve as support car for the expedition.
courtesy Ryan Edy, SOURCE