This week at Mawson we have reached the South Pole, discovered some new leisure activities and shifted a lot of snow.

More snow moving

With all the recent snow that we have received over the last month it was starting to get a bit difficult to get around the station. A lot of the roads have disappeared, walkways have been buried and buildings have filled up. So this week a massive effort from the diesel mechanics and infrastructure team has seen a lot of the snow moved out onto the sea ice as the roads are rediscovered.

Fishing, hiking and golf… another weekend in paradise

With the days getting longer and the sun shining on Mawson once again the weekends have become opportunities to explore and have some outside fun.

Last weekend Sam and Gav took the opportunity to visit Welsh Island. Welsh is located within our station recreational area and is the highest island close to us. A brisk half hour walk up the hill gives a view right across the plateau to the Casey Ranges and in the opposite direction across the sea ice and all the frozen in icebergs. A Weddell seal was also spotted chilling out on the sea ice.

Sam, Josh and Tony D also decided to try a spot of fishing. To be able to fish in Antarctica we need to get a permit, the permit allows us to take 100 fish a year. So far we have caught 3 in total, all looked rather inedible so were returned back to the ocean.

Extreme golf is the third weekend activity that has been getting a try-out, the main difficulty is spotting were your ball lands… on the white sea ice or the piles of white snow…


The ANARESAT is the name of the satellite dish that provides the station with internet and phones and it is housed in a large dome shaped building on the hill behind the living quarters. The satellite that it points at is a geosynchronous satellite meaning that the satellite stays above the same point of the earth, moving in synchrony with the earth. This gives us 24/7 internet and phone access.

Radio waves are collected by the large dish and then transmitted via the waveguide to the receiver which converts all the radio waves to usable phone and internet… so I obviously didn’t quite understand the whole concept. I am still stuck on the satellites in the sky that hold position over the same place on earth, that’s amazing!

Apart from the amazing technology that the dish provides for the station, the ANARESAT dome is quite a distinctive piece of architecture, and features in many aurora photos. Inside it is even more theatrical with all the little panels individually bolted together, lit by flood lights that cast deep shadows up the walls… midwinter movie festival set…?

Walk to the South Pole

For the month of July five teams from the Antarctic Division accepted the challenge to walk or run, ski, cycle or swim 2500 kms: the distance from Mawson to the South Pole. All the teams have put in an amazing effort and it was a very close race to the finish.

Team Mawson was first across the line, followed by Remediation Rampage, the Casey White Walkers and the Gumboot Ramblers.

Team Davis have had some injury woes but are so close we can nearly see them and they have a couple of days to go.

To celebrate the end of dry July and Walk to the South Pole we are planning on having a South Pole party this weekend so photos will be in next week’s Icy News.

Well done everyone, it has been a great effort and hopefully we have also spread the news about a couple of great charities, headspace and Animal Management in Rural and Remote Indigenous Communities (AMRRIC). There is still time to make a donation to these great causes via our everyday hero pages that are current being featured on the everyday heroes wonderwall.