Ultimate road trip ends on the ice

MICHAEL FIELD
Last updated 12:11 16/02/2013
South Pole.
Ryan Wallace, USAP

Three tractors on their way to the South Pole.

Relevant offers

Drive

Lower drink-driving limit effects felt on and off the road Reversing SUV hits and flips car What's really underneath the facelifted Ford Mustang? Resident shocked to learn her home of 20 years 'no longer exists' Thieves make off with two rare Holdens from Waikato property Congestion has eased after crash caused delays out of capital Brancatelli back on the track for historic GP Alfa Romeo flies blind in Giulia record bid Boat stuck under bridge on SH1 south of Waikanae Z-nails scattered on Marlborough highway could result in deaths or serious injuries, police warn

One of the world's toughest road trips, a 14 weeks drive to the South Pole from McMurdo Sound, ended yesterday, the Antarctic Sun reports.

It says the South Pole Operations Traverse used tracked Caterpillar and Case tractors to haul bladders of fuel and sleds of cargo across the continent.

It travelled 5600 kilometres to deliver 530,000 litres of fuel carried in large bladders on sleds to the South Pole.

It went to an abandoned field camp to remove 36,000 kilos of cargo.

The Sun, produced by the US Antarctic Program says the driving saved them an estimated 65 C-130 Hercules flights.

The "road" the trip takes is through two shear zones, or heavily crevassed areas. They use ground-penetrating radar to avoid trouble. They move at around 6.5 kilometres per hour.

In 1957 New Zealand's Sir Edmund Hillary drove three farm tractors from Scott Base to the South Pole, taking three months to do it.

A hundred years ago it took Norwegian polar explorer Roald Amundsen and his team of men and sled dogs eight weeks from the edge of the Ross Ice Shelf to the South Pole.

Ad Feedback

- Stuff

Special offers

Featured Promotions

Sponsored Content