With the broken Hägglunds repaired, only needing a new gearbox, all we could do was wait for a favourable weather window. Conditions improved enough for us to leave on the 25th Sept, so we headed out, our ﬁrst stop Colbeck Hut.
Having left the sled trailer and some of our gear at Colbeck we made good time retracing our tracks, giving way to the odd penguin or two. We busied ourselves with refuelling and repacking, preparing for our next adventure, Colbeck to Ledingham's.
Ledingham’s Depot was one of a series of depots/caches, some containing just fuel and ration packs, for the dog route to Kloa Point. Kloa is roughly 260km west of Mawson and hasn’t been visited since 2001. Ledingham’s depot has had various uses, from providing refuge for the dog crews up to the early 90s, to a base for geoscientists in the early to mid 2000s. The depot was last visited in 2018, reminding us how lucky we are.
The track to Ledingham’s depot was littered with impressive icebergs, the coastline unveiling its beauty as we progressed. Before we knew it the depot could be seen, a red highlight amongst a blanket of white. Setting up camp was a breeze, we set up a couple of tents and the canvas out-house and settled in for the ﬁrst night. We made it.
Apart from the maintenance work we had been tasked to photograph a small penguin rookery and located a number of caches. After spending some time negotiating our way through a maze of islands we spotted a small emperor rookery nestled behind an island. Time for some photos and to take in the place.
Locating old caches can be a fruitless task, however we struck it lucky ﬁnding two of the three. Well weathered and at least 15 years old, not bad. The best part about searching for old caches, we could explore and we did. What an amazing place and so few have the opportunity to witness it.
One hell of a lucky guy.
Michael Brill - aka Tweety