Contents
  Title Page
  Preparations Arizona USA
  Preparations Punta Arenas, Chile
  Day 1: Antarctica!
  Day 2: First Taste of the Wind
  Day 3: Close Call
  Day 4: A Beautiful Day
  Day 5: The Wedge Design
  Day 6: Circle of Survivability
  Day 7: Mountains to our West
  Day 8: Skiing in a White out
  Day 9: Jenny Unleashed
  Day 10: Face Mask Freezing to the Nose
  Day 11: Howling Winds and Rough Terrain
  Day 12: Sledging away from the Maritime Influence
  Day 13: Rocking out
  Day 14: Frozen Face Mask
  Day 15: Coldest and Windiest Place on Earth
  Day 16: Skiing on Frozen Rubble
  Day 17: Tracks!
  Day 18: Slogging into Fierce Headwinds
  Day 19: First Sponge Bath
  Day 20: Playing in the Junkyard
  Day 21: Three Weeks, One-Third of the Distance
  Day 22: Playing in the Junkyard, Part 2
  Day 23: The otherworldly Glowing Blue Light
  Day 24: A Packman Game
  Day 25: The vision must be kept
  Day 26: Frozen Cameras
  Day 27: Low Margins of Safety in Strong Winds
  Day 28: Anomalies in the flat Antarctica myth
  Day 29: Thiels Mountains Visible in the Distance
  Day 30: The Half-Way Point
  Day 31: Mid-Journey Resupply
  Day 32: Sastrugi on top of Sastrugi
  Day 33: Skiing Alongside the Thiels
  Day 34: White Out and Mild-Mannered Sastrugi
  Day 35: Difficult Terrain
  Day 36: Cameras Frozen All Day
  Day 37: Alone in an Immense Wilderness
  Day 38: Warm weather and sleds are dragging hard
  Day 39: Climbing to the Polar Plateau
  Day 40: The Disappearing Hill
  Day 41: Extreme Fun
  Day 42: Seven Down, Three to Go
  Day 43: If your ski tips have no shadow, stop quick!
  Day 44: A Strange Object Flies Overhead
  Day 45: Perils of Crossing a Body-Heat Rubicon
  Day 46: Inspired to Greater Heights
  Day 47: Antarctica's Double Sun
  Day 48: Eight Degrees Down, Two To Go
  Day 49: Skiing in the Tropic of Antarctica
  Day 50: The Sun and its Antics
  Day 51: Short Antarctic Summers Wait for No One
  Day 52: Showers and laundry perhaps? No chance
  Day 53: Gaining the Polar Plateau
  Day 54: Good Weather, Fairly Flat Terrain
  Day 55: Climbing the Same Hill for Three Days
  Day 56: Cold but Very Pretty
  Day 57: Gorgeous Weather, Enjoyable Day
  Day 58: Almost There
  Day 59: The Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station
  The Flight to Patriot Hills
  Patriot Hills
  Mount Vinson
  Patriot Hills
  Aconcagua

Skiing to South Pole

Fierce Winds, Ultra-Cold Temperatures

Adventures in Antarctica

58 days, 700 mi, Nov 2006 - Jan 2007

Ray & Jenny Jardine

2006-12-10 page 33 of 67

Day 30: The Half-Way Point

Blue skies, light wind, (SSE 10 to 15) it almost seems that summer has finally come to Antarctica. Enjoy it while it lasts. The terrain was not as severe. And the scenery was absolutely spectacular with mountains all around.

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Today was our best day ever, mileage wise (16.0) but much more than that, enjoyment wise. We have paid our dues to this point, and we are enjoying this trip to the max. Where else could you find so much elbow room, and an ultra-pristine landscape? A month without seeing anyone, and not one shred of trash.

As we skied along in single file, we each listened to our music, each lost in thought. The time does not drag on; it just seems to fly.

I find so much pleasant to think about here. I suppose it is because there is no outside negative influences. No bad news from the media, no advertisements, no daily, hourly, and by the minute turmoil of society to have to deal with. So the mind is free to soar.

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This afternoon we reached 85 south. At the estimated spot we drew a line across the snow indicating the latitude, a customary gesture. Five down, five to go. That means we have reached the half-way point on our journey.

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Health-wise we are both doing great. We're slowly losing weight, but not nearly as much as we expected. We have not taken a proper bath in a month, and our clothing needs laundering, but that is not an option, so we don't worry about it. Some of our gear is starting to wear out, namely boots and bindings, and we can only hope they will last another month. The boots and the bindings are each doing well, but where the two meet is a war zone, and both are slowly losing.

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Late afternoon Jenny thought she could see the resupply, 14 miles away. We are not wearing prescription eye wear this trip, so we can't be sure. The cache consists primarily of 100 55-gallon barrels of aircraft fuel, sitting on a 4-foot high platform of snow. So she could be right. Anyway, we can home in on it with our GPS if need be.

photo

Evening camp: S 85° 03.944' W 86° 46.630'

Today's mileage: 16.0 in 10 hrs

Temperature: -13 C

The story has 67 pages. This is page 33.
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