It was the ancient Greeks who first thought of Antarctica in 350 BC. Although only a few centuries later Antarctica and the era of the famous polar explorer were discovered, the Greeks knew the Arctic, they called it “Arkos” (bear) after the constellation Ursa Major, and they assumed that there must be a southern land. The world of balance is called “Ant-Arcos” (opposite the bear). Here we get acquainted with the fascinating stories of some of the most famous polar explorers who entered the dangerous territory of Antarctica.
Captain James Cook
James Cook is a true Antarctic explorer, technically he cannot set foot on the continent or even see its coastline, which could cause confusion. However, his journey was much further south than any other at the time and was only impeded by an extensive ice sheet.
Until the 1770s no one rented the waters around Antarctica. There are many assumptions that there are not even continents there. James Cook was appointed commander and sent to investigate. In 1772 he set sail on two ships of Adventure and Determination along the coast of Africa, crossing the Cape of Good Hope, in search of the Terra Australis. Unfortunately, it was blocked by ice and could not penetrate more than 70 degrees south (edge of Antarctica).
Sir Ernest Shackleton
Perhaps the most famous polar explorer, Ernest Shackleton, led two major expeditions to Antarctica from 1907 to 1909 and from 1914 to 1917.
Shackleton’s first Antarctic expedition set out from the UK with Australian explorer Douglas Mawson (another polar pioneer expert, see below) where he completed the first ascent to Mount Erebus. The first peak, the second-highest mountain in Antarctica and still an active volcano.
But even if this expedition failed, it was Shackleton’s second mission to make history. Antarctica was conquered, so Shackleton decided to become the first person to cross the continent from the coast.
Unfortunately, their ship HMS Endurance was trapped in the ice of the tolerant Weddell Sea, and the crew had to spend the winter on Elephant Island to melt the ice. However, the crushing of the ice caused irreparable damage, and when the ice melted in the spring, the ship sank into the water.
Amundsen from Norway is one of the most famous polar explorers in history and the first person in his life to reach the North and South Poles. Get to the South Pole in the game.
His journey to Antarctica began with a plan to reach the North Pole. According to the Encyclopedia Britannica, he intends to cross the North Pole on ice floes, but claims that American Robert Peary arrived there in 1909, prompting Amundsen and his team to quickly change fields. They will go south.
He set sail on the Fram and headed straight for Whale Bay to set up camp, making the starting point closer to the Poles than Robert Falcon Scott’s base (he tried the same trip at the same time). Amundsen hit the road with four teammates and 52 dogs in October 1911, but only arrived two months later due to good weather.
Robert Falcon Scott
Robert Falcon Scott was synonymous with Antarctica. His first expedition was in 1901 but he failed due to a lack of appropriate materials and resources. His expedition required a rescue mission to bring his crew home. However, Scott was determined: despite fierce competition with Norwegian Roald Amundsen, he began planning a second expedition, this time to the South Pole.
Scott set out with five soldiers and tried to reach the South Pole first, but upon arrival found that the Amundsen expedition had defeated him in just four weeks. On the way back, the crew encountered a blizzard that caused scurvy, dehydration and hypothermia.
When the brave resigned themselves to their fate, they wrote a letter to their loved ones, and now in the Antarctic Observation Point, there is a monument to the lost mission with the words: To strive, to seek, to fine, and not to yield.”