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Voyer: Vinson 2001
standing at the Earth's three polesthe North
Pole, the South Pole and Mount
EverestBernard Voyer has taken on a new
challenge: A world tour via the highest mountain
on each continent.
November 8, 2001, Bernard
Voyer will complete the last stop on his World
Tour of the highest mountains, by climbing Mount
Vinson (4897 meters), the highest peak in the Antarctic,
with climbing partner Nathalie Tremblay.
we are still in Punta Arenas. We have been receiving
weather reports from Antarctica every three hours
since 6 am on November 24. There was a lull in the
wind yesterday, but it picked up again last night. We
are still waiting, hour by hour, for an opportunity to
leave. Thus, everything is ready. We could leave at
any time, even during the night. Here in Punta Arenas,
it gets dark at night, but in Antarctica, there is no
night. Thus, it does not make much difference for
landing the plane.
of our equipment for the expedition is already loaded
onto the plane. Only a few personal belongings remain;
we will bring them with us in small daypacks.
we are ready to move, but still waiting. We have been
waiting since November 16; we hope the weather
conditions improve in the next few hours, so we can
finally start our expedition.
weather is unstable; the winds die down and then pick
up again. However, when it calms, large clouds roll in
and cling to the mountain ramparts. Thus, the cloud
ceiling is quite low, reducing visibility to zero for
a large plane such as the Ilyushin, a Russian jet
aircraft, to land on a natural, unmaintained airstrip.
else to report at this time, except for an
increasingly lengthy wait. However, morale is
excellent and we are taking advantage of this wait to
strengthen our focus and look at things from a
philosophical point of view. There is absolutely
nothing we can do. Our schedule is totally dependent
on the extreme conditions in Antarctica. We must be
patient. Thus, we are waiting for Antarctica to open
its doors to us.