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Immediate report of Victoria University of Wellington Antarctic Expedition 1988-89: VUWAE 33


page 48


The put-in site on the Darwin Glacier, just north of Richardson Hill proved to be unsuitable due to moderate crevassing. There appear to be no suitable landing sites in this area.

The only ideal landing site found was the pull out site which is close to that used by the Darwin Project in 1978-79. It is about 5 km west of the southern tip of Roadend Nunatak (79° 51′S 158° 10′E), a 3000 m strip was marked out by two rows of flags 500 m apart, the strip was orientated along the length of the glacier and provided good approach and escape routes.

Airdrops of mail and food were made into the Darwin Glacier and six 12 gallon drums containing mogas and DFA were dropped into the Fry Glacier. All the airdrops were successful and no breakages occurred, the Darwin drops made use of aircraft returning from regular pole flights and as such were economical on aircraft hours.

The Fry Glacier drop (fuel) and landing site recce used considerably more LC-130 hour than was expected due to four missions which had to be abandoned because of weather and mechanical problems.