Antarctic Ice Marathon 2011

It's 100 years since Amundsen beat Scott to the South Pole. To mark the anniversary, we headed to the Antarctic for a modern polar challenge: the Antarctic Ice Marathon

by Alison Hamlett; Photos: Alison Hamlett & Mike King

The mountains protect the camp from strong winds
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After a breakfast of porridge, pancakes, fresh fruit and coffee, we climb into the back of a motorised sledge to drive up to the start. The marathon course will be one and three-quarter laps of a 25K loop so we need to travel from the camp – where the race will finish – to the start. There has been a lot of debate among the runners about what to wear, especially after camp meteorologist Marc de Keyser gives us a weather update that the air temperature is -12C, dropping to -25C with the wind chill out on the course. The Union Glacier camp is protected from high winds by the surrounding mountains but out on the course it may be breezier. I go for a merino baselayer, thin fleece and windproof shell on top, and wool thermals and windproof trousers. On my head I wear a balaclava and goggles, and on my hands fleece gloves under windproof mittens. I pull two pairs of wool socks onto my feet, followed by Pearl Izumi trail shoes. Everyone slathers on factor 50SPF as protection against the sunlight pouring through the hole in the ozone layer.

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Discuss this article

Absolutely in awe, an amazing achievement well done everyone!!!
Posted: 14/12/2011 at 15:32

Wow - looks totally and utterly amazing!
Posted: 14/12/2011 at 22:05

Congrats to everyone who took part, what a great achievement. An even bigger well done to Yvonne Brown who completed it for a great cause.  All your friends from 'the job' are I'm sure willing to support your efforts. I for one, am.
Posted: 14/12/2011 at 22:13

Well done - looks INCREDIBLE, almost €10000 to enter it next year, which I wan't to be snidy about but purely because i'm incredibly jealous!  maybe one day!
Posted: 15/12/2011 at 23:45


Is it possible for some information with regards to Brand/Make of the footwear used by any of the runners in the Ice Marathon (Antartic) or even any snow/ice race.

I hope to do this run and would like to get my footwear right.


Posted: 03/06/2012 at 08:36

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