May 2, 2004
Outside Magazine

The Trip-Finder, January 1999
Ski Mountaineering in Queen Maud Land
Outfitter Price Accommodations
Adventure Network International
$25,000 camping
Cascade Alpine Guides & Adventures
$30,000 camping
Geographic Expeditions
$22,750 camping

The Route: A pioneering — and pricey — 21-day expedition to the recently opened Holtedahl Mountains. You'll fly from Capetown via C-130 to an ice runway at Blue One Camp and then ski among, or scale, mostly unclimbed, daggerlike peaks that rise up to 10,000 feet above this snow-blanketed Mars.

When to go: November through January

Difficulty: Difficult

Travel advisory: Alpine aficionados should opt for ANI's climbing-only trip; intermediates and nonclimbers should choose GeoEx's easier peaks and ski-touring alternatives. Either way, temps hover between minus 10 and 30 degrees — excluding the windchill.

High/low points:

  • Being among the first people to stand at the summit of Ulvetanna Peak, one of a dozen spires that, had they been open to commercial expeditions before, would already be classics.
  • Packing your waste back to Capetown to keep the Antarctic environment pristine.

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