Saturday 23 April 2011

Beautiful south: an Antarctic cruise [video]

by Pascal Wyse, The Guardian
Go with the floe … inching into the Antarctic wilderness. Photograph: Paul Goldstein

A wildlife expedition to the Antarctic peninsula provides some unforgettable moments, from cruising through the ice floes to ice-climbing among comical penguins

Judging by the wild goose chase detailed on the Antarctic Circle website, the $100 reward won't be an easy bounty. The money is yours if you can find evidence to prove that Ernest Shackleton, on the verge of a trip to Antarctica in 1912, really did take out a newspaper advert as follows: "Men wanted for hazardous journey. Low wages, bitter cold, long hours of complete darkness. Safe return doubtful. Honour and recognition in event of success."

Whether it appeared in print or not, you can't fault it for accuracy. The carnage of Antarctic discovery is all over the maps: Cape Disappointment, Exasperation Inlet, Deception Island, Terror Gulf. Then there are the stories, more or less known: Scott's expedition disaster after being beaten to the south pole, Captain Oates walking out of the tent to his certain death, claiming he "may be some time", and Apsley Cherry-Garrard's conclusion that "an Antarctic expedition is the worst way to have the best time of your life".

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