the Journey

  • Distance to go: 0 Mi

    Ben and Tarka will cover 1800 miles starting from Scott's Terra Nova Hut at the edge of Antarctica to the South Pole and back to the coast again. That's equivalent to 69 back-to-back marathons hauling up to 200kg each (the weight of roughly two adult men) of kit and supplies necessary to survive.

    Distances here are shown in statute miles.

On the Move (Day 14)

Day 14: S78° 46' 30.34", E168° 33' 59.06"

Daily distance: 8.7 Mi

Distance to go: 1704.3 Mi

Altitude: 187 Ft

Due to the poor weather Ben and Tarka have limited power (from the solar panels) so there's no blog post from Ben today. They are however on the move since the storm and covered 8.7 miles on day 14. Providing the weather clears they'll be back online shortly.

In the meantime here's a short video filmed by Ben before he left explaining navigating in a whiteout; and to celebrate a fortnight on the ice vote for your favourite pic so far.


# Nick, November 8th 2013

1/18th of the way there - which means only 17 more laps to go.  I think that helps the momentum.

# dj, November 8th 2013

From the looks of GPS signals, yesterday was an “on the move day” but today is another weather day.  Thanks Cassie for the update, I suspect you’ll need to step in and do a few more before this is over.

It doesn’t look like being inside the ring of the ‘Hillary Coast’ is helping the weather any. As an FYI, they have recently updated the MODIS satellite image for the area Ben and Tarka are going through. There is a lot more texture to the image of the Ross Ice Sheet now with gives a better idea of what they are going through.

The image is available in the un-official Scott Expedition Resource File - a Google Earth file containing about every Antarctic resource available. To use, download the file and open it in Google Earth. Click on the folder “MODIS Mosaic Antarctica” to see the new images.

# Edwin (5th Grade, GB School, USA), November 8th 2013

What is your favorite meal that you have to eat?  Good luck!

# Scott Expedition Team, November 12th 2013

Ben and Tarka are debating whether it’s beef stew, lamb stew or chicken jalfrezi

# Iva (5th Grade, GB School, USA)), November 8th 2013

Have you found any living things, like animals?  Best wishes!

# Antwain (5th Grade, GB School, USA), November 8th 2013

Why do you think no one tried the Scott Expedition in the 102 years since the first one?  Good luck!

# David (5th Grade, GB School, USA), November 8th 2013

What happens when you get tired and you are skiing and you can’t rest?  Stay safe!

# Daniel C. (5th Grade, GB School, USA), November 8th 2013

Are there any dangerous animals that can hurt you on your trip?  Stay safe!

# Kristoffer, November 8th 2013

Daniel, the only dangerous animal they might have encountered if they had gone to the coast would be the leopard seal.  So no, they shouldn’t encounter any dangerous animals.

# KFrost, November 9th 2013

Hi Daniel, Gareth Wood was one of three men who walked to the South Pole in 1985/86.  He wrote an excellent book with Eric Jamieson called “South Pole:900 Miles on Foot” about that expedition.  They did this journey without support - no dog teams, food caches, air-support or radio communications, the first in history to do an unsupported trip like this.  He was attacked on the ice close to shore by a leopard seal and he tells about his chilling and frightening experience in that book.  There is an excerpt on his website.  Here is the link to an account of that experience:

# Quinn (5th Grade, GB School, USA), November 8th 2013

What brand of electronics do you use that can withstand such cold temperatures?  Stay warm!

# George Chapman, November 8th 2013

Quinn you can watch this video which explains what sort of electronics they use.

# Esmeralda (5th Grade, GB School, USA), November 8th 2013

What would happen if you ran out of food?  Good luck!

# Kristoffer, November 8th 2013

If they ran out of food, they would probably have to be evacuated by aircraft.  I hope that will not happen.

# Christian (5th Grade, GB School, USA), November 8th 2013

Do you change your clothes?  How do you do it since it is so cold?  Stay safe!

# Scott Expedition Team, November 20th 2013

Yes - but infrequently, although Ben and Tarka change their socks daily, rotating and drying them so their feet stay relatively healthy. They change in their sleeping bags.

# Brandon (5th Grade, GB School, USA), November 8th 2013

If you could average your speed per mile, what do you estimate it is?  Thanks!

# Kristoffer, November 8th 2013


Ben and Tarka have gone 1,800-1704.3=95.7 statute miles as of day 14.  So their average as of day 14 is 95.7/14=6.83571 statute miles per day.

# Ismael (5th Grade, GB School, USA), November 8th 2013

What would you do if you fell in the water?  Is there any water to fall into where you are?  Stay safe!

# Kristoffer, November 8th 2013

The ice is too thick for Ben and Tarka to fall into water, but at places like the Beardmore Glacier, they will have to worry about falling into crevasses which have no water.  They are prepared with climbing gear and harnesses so they don’t far too far and can climb out.

# Lexi (5th Grade, GB School, USA), November 8th 2013

How do you prevent yourselves from getting frostbite? Stay warm!

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