Thursday, December 16, 2010

Preparing For The Flight to Antarctica

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Yesterday we attended a pre-flight meeting organized by the outfitter Antarctic Logistics (ANI) in preparation for our expected flight later today. We are waiting for a phone call this morning to find out if the winds are low enough to fly.

Their previous camp on Antarctica was called Patriot Hills but possibly because a number of their tents were blown away they have moved the camp to Union Glacier where it is not expected to be as windy.

Our plane is a Russian made Ilyshin Il-76 aircraft that carries about 60 people. It lands on the cleared blue ice runway near the camp. On our flight will be Mount Vinson climbers but also a few that are planning to ski to the South Pole about 600 km from our camp.

Our flight will take about 4 hours to the camp then another hour and a quarter in a smaller ski plane to the base of Mount Vinson. From Punta Arenas, we will be travelling about 4,000 km into the interior of Antarctica, a continent twice the size of Australia.

We hope for good weather!

Dan Mallory

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