South Pole's First Building Blown Up After 53 Years
March 31, 2011
Only a select few ever make it to the South Pole. Still fewer get to blow things up there. And only one man has the distinction of blowing up a piece of real estate at the South Pole that he once called home.
"It was a little sad, but the day goes on," said John Rand, a consulting engineer with the U.S. Army's Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory (CRREL).
Last December, the Antarctic Sun recently reported, Rand was part of a crew charged with dynamiting a piece of history — the very first permanent dwelling ever built at the South Pole. [Related: Extreme Living: Scientists at the End of the Earth.]
In the decades since it was constructed in the mid 1950s, the long-abandoned outpost was swallowed up by the ever-shifting snows of the frozen continent. And, after a frightening accident, the original South Pole station had to go.
Rand, a specialist in drilling ice cores — long cylinders of ice pulled up from glaciers — passed his first South Pole stay at the station, a four-month exercise in long hours, isolation and bachelor living, from late 1971 to early 1972.
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