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Antarctica Local Customs: 63 reviews and 95 photos

No, not shy. It was hail! Preview of Dr. Passage! - Antarctica

No, not shy. It was hail! Preview of Dr. Passage!

M/S Explorer II - Jan. 23, 2004

Jan. 23, 2004 (Sunrise: 0445, Sunset: 2155)
DRAKE PASSAGE


"We are the fools that could not rest
In the dull earth we left behind,
But burned with passion for the South
And drank strange frenzy from its wind."

~ From The Ship of Fools by St. John Lucas, one of Shackleton's favorite quotes. ~

Review Helpfulness: 4 out of 5 stars

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  • Updated Feb 15, 2004
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Pleneau - Antarctica

Pleneau

Ernest Shackleton

For a complete & detail writeup, go to MSN Encarta.

Excerpt from MSN Encarta:
"Shackleton, Sir Ernest Henry (1874-1922), British explorer of Antarctica. Shackleton led three expeditions to the Antarctic, on one of them coming within 179 km (111 mi) of reaching the South Pole, the closest anyone had come at that time. Shackleton is most remembered for leading the fabled Endurance expedition, in which his men survived for ten months on ice floes and on a barren uninhabited island after their ship was crushed by pack ice in the Weddell Sea.

Shackleton was born in County Kildare, Ireland, the eldest son and second of ten children of a Quaker doctor and his wife. The Shackleton family motto was the Latin phrase Fortitudine Vincimus (by endurance we conquer). Shackleton attended Dulwich College in London, England, for three years before going to sea at age 16. He spent the next 11 years in the merchant marine."

Review Helpfulness: 3.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Updated Feb 11, 2004
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Pleneau - Antarctica

Pleneau

Scott & Amundsen South Pole Rivalry II

(Cont. from last tip).

Source: Lonely Planet.

"Meanwhile, Scott was preparing another sortie and was desperate to beat Amundsen to the South Pole. He sailed from New Zealand in November 1910, and a team of five made a final push to the Pole on 2 October the next year. The journey was impossibly difficult, and they reached the Pole only to find that Amunsden had been there 23 days earlier. Scott's disappointment was enormous, and the party turned around to begin the return journey. Two men died within two months, and the surviving three pushed on for another month until, just 18km (11mi) from base, the weather pinned them down. Scott's last journal entry was 29 March and their frozen bodies were found eight months later by a search party."

Review Helpfulness: 3.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Feb 9, 2004
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Pleneau - Antarctica

Pleneau

Scott & Amundsen South Pole Rivalry

Source: Lonely Planet.

"Captain Robert Falcon Scott's well-financed expedition in the Discovery left England in August 1901, crossed the Antarctic Circle in January 1902, penetrated the Ross Sea and discovered King Edward VII Land. Scott's men endured the winter with the comfort of windmill-powered electric lights, their own Royal Terror Theatre and the production of Antarctica's first magazine, the monthly South Polar Times.

With spring came the real work: Scott and two others, with 19 dogs and five supply sledges, took off for the South Pole. None had skied or driven sledge dogs before and their inexperience was telling. Despite this, they reached 82? 16.5' south before they turned back, but the return trip was awful. As the dogs weakened they were shot and fed to the others. They made it back to the Discovery to find that the relief ship Morning had arrived. Scott sent eight men home and spent another winter in the Discovery, leaving the following summer.

Norwegian Roald Gravning Amundsen, who had been part of the de Gerlache expedition that wintered in Antarctica, set sail from Christiana (modern-day Oslo) in 1910 in a bid to be the first man to reach the North Pole. When he heard American Robert Peary had already reached the North Pole, Amundsen did a literal about-face. Aware of Robert Scott's rival expedition, Amundsen secretively headed south. Setting out from his Ross Ice Shelf base on 19 October, 1911, Amundsen and four others headed for the Pole. The planning was meticulous: Amundsen took three or four backups for every critical item and set up 10 well-marked depots down to 82? south. On 14 December, 1911, Amundsen and his party reached the South Pole, claiming it for Norway. Amundsen left a tent at the Pole with a note inside for Scott to read."

(Cont. on next tip).

Review Helpfulness: 4 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Feb 9, 2004
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Pleneau - Antarctica

Pleneau

1st Person to see the Antarctic continent

Source: Lonely Planet.

"In January 1820 Russian Fabian von Bellingshausen became the first person to see the Antarctic continent. He described it as 'an icefield covered with small hillocks'. It wasn't until 120 years later that his achievements were properly appreciated - the Soviet Union was then keen to establish Antarctic claims."

Review Helpfulness: 3.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Feb 9, 2004
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Pleneau - Antarctica

Pleneau

James Cook

Source: Lonely Planet

"James Cook became the first person to cross the Antarctic Circle in 1773, but he circumnavigated Antarctica without once sighting land. Cook's observations on the huge seal and whale populations encouraged sealers and whalers to arrive in droves: nearly one third of the Southern Ocean and subantarctic islands were subsequently discovered by sealers."

Review Helpfulness: 3.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Feb 9, 2004
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Overwhelming! - Antarctica

Overwhelming!

M/S Explorer II - Jan. 25, 2004

Jan. 25, 2004 (Sunrise: 0546, Sunset: 2146)
USHUAIA


"Antarctica left a restless longing in my heart beckoning towards an incomprehensible perfection forever beyond the reach of mortal man.
Its overwhelming beauty touches one so deeply that it is like a wound."

~ Edwin Mickleburgh, Beyond the Frozen Sea. ~

Review Helpfulness: 3.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Feb 7, 2004
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Brad. He has a patch on... but oh yes, again! - Antarctica

Brad. He has a patch on... but oh yes, again!

M/S Explorer II - Jan. 24, 2004

Jan. 24, 2004 (Sunrise: 0532, Sunset: 2148)
CAPE HORN


"And now to conclude.
Is it worth doing?
Ask any member of the Imperial Transantarctic Expedition & you will receive the reply:
'Yes, I wouldn't have missed it for worlds.' &
'Would you go again?'
'Rather.'
Such is the call of the South."

~ T.H Orde-Lees. Diary of Endurance Expedition. ~

Review Helpfulness: 3.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Feb 7, 2004
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Is that u Virgi? No, not me. On VT, are u kidding? - Antarctica

Is that u Virgi? No, not me. On VT, are u kidding?

M/S Explorer II - Jan. 22, 2004

Jan. 22, 2004 (Sunrise: 0407, Sunset: 2213)
DECEPTION ISLAND - PENDULUM COVE


"And so... quietly as the coming dawn, we entered the solitude of the ocean.
& if we were not annihilated by the contemplation of such vast adventure it was by grave of that wise providence of man's nature which, to preserve his reason, lets him be thoughtless before immensity."

~ Rockwell Kent ~

"A recently active volcano, Deception Island is one of the most famous islands of the South Shetland archipelago.
Originally discovered by American & British sealers in the 1820's, the island's name refers to its deceiving donut-like shape.
The "donut" has a very small bite taken out of it, which forms a narrow entrance into the flooded caldera of the original volcano.
The entrance is known as Neptune's Bellows.
Many early mariners sailed right past this narrow entrance without ever seeing the inner bay.
Once discovered, the island became a center of activity in the region precisely because of its large sheltered harbor.
In the early 1900's, whaling companies used Port Foster as a mooring site for floating factory ships.
The shore whaling station was in use between 1911 & 1913.
During the 1940s & 50s the British, Argentines & Chileans all built bases at the island.
In 1967 a sizable volcanic eruption was recorded & in 1969 another eruption badly damaged a British Base & partly buried the old whaling station in ash & cinders.
A 3rd eruption in 1970 produced a series of craters, which is still visible.

Pendulum Cove - Here geothermal activity can produce hot water fumaroles along the shoreline. A quick dip in "Antartica's swimming hole" is a fascinating experience.
At Pendulum Cove are geothermal springs which were created during volcanic activity on Deception Island in 1967, 1969 & 1970.
The result is an area of natural sulphur hot springs near the shore which sometimes afford us an opportunity to bathe in Antarctic waters!
~ M/S Explorer II ~

Review Helpfulness: 4.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Feb 7, 2004
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Penguins & the incredible beauty of Port Lockroy! - Antarctica

Penguins & the incredible beauty of Port Lockroy!

M/S Explorer II - Jan. 21, 2004

Jan. 21, 2004 ( Sunrise: 0359, Sunset: 2245)
PORT LOCKROY
LEMAIRE CHANNEL


"Glittering white, shining blue, raven black, in the light of the sun the land looks like a fairy tale.
Pinnacle after pinnacle, peak after peak, crevassed, wild & as any land on our globe, it lies unseen & untrodden"

~ Roald Amundsen ~

"Neumayer Channel - This narrow channel is surrounded by towering glaciated peaks."
"Port Lockroy was established in 1944 as Base A during Operation Tabarin.
The original station hut "Bransfield House" still survives as the core of the main building & is the oldest British structure remaining on the Antarctica Peninsula.
The repair & conservation of Port Lockroy as a historic site & museum began in Jan. 1996.
The objective is to preserve the station & provide visitors with an impression of life & conditions as an Antarctic station as it was in the 50's & 60's.
The station is staffed for the summer season.
The post office at Port Lockroy also sells some souvenirs."
~ M/S Explorer II ~

Review Helpfulness: 4 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Feb 7, 2004
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