In January 1912, Sir Douglas Mawson finally made his way back to Cape Denison, missing his ship, the Aurora, by about three hours.
It was a cold night with the wind chill reaching -18.4 degrees Celsius. By 5.00 a.m. I’d had enough of being cold and weather beaten by the Katabatic wind smashing the side of my tent and bouncing off my head so I decided to make my way to our base, the Sorensen Hut, for a warm cup of tea and read a couple of pages of my book.
Penguins’ chatter outside my tent woke me to Christmas Day in Antarctica, but instead of Santa’s sleigh there was just the usual run to ensure our human waste doesn’t permanently become part of this frozen wilderness.
It’s Dec 14, a special day for those of us lucky enough to be in Antarctica. On this day, 98 years ago, Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen became the first person to reach the South Pole. He was wearing skis and heavy fur clothing and hauling his gear behind a team of dogs (many of which became dinner throughout the journey).