Willem-Alexander & Máxima Visit Antarctica

  February 9, 2009 at 2:59 am by

Willem-Alexander and Maxima in Antarctica

Click the image to see more photos from RVD

The Prince of Orange and Princess Máxima are currently on an expedition to Antarctica, as part of the Dutch branch of International Polar Year. The expedition was planned by Dutch scientists after Queen Beatrix expressed an interest in knowing more about the effects of climate change on the globe, and in particular, the North and South Poles.

Willem-Alexander and Máxima began their trip on February 4, when they flew to Chile to learn more about the project. The pair arrived in Antarctica two days later, and are staying with the British Research Station in Rothera. During their stay, Willem-Alexander and Máxima have attended a diving demonstration, camped overnight in a tent on a glacier and flew over several research locations on Adelaide Island.

To read more about this trip, please visit this thread.

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3 Responses to Willem-Alexander & Máxima Visit Antarctica

  1. Lucien says:

    As most news of their adventures on Antarctica is in Dutch,Alexander writes it…..and most here on our Forum can’t comprehend.I try and translate some of his latest blog dated yesterday from their camp at Anchorage Island where they stayed the night for a survival training.

    ” We were hauled inside a gletscher yesterday,well prepared except for the wonderfull breathtakingly blue light underneath the ice.We were stunned by the halls and corridors there where we could walk and crawl into.It is then you realise this seemingly white world is conctantly on the move,sqeaking and all.A beautifull and save place to ride one day can be a most dangerous abbyss the next.Change is fast here.
    It was a un-for-get-table experience for us.

    Setting up a tent in the middle of a storm is one thing with wind gusts of over 100 km an hour is a little different from what we are used too in Europe…..with herrings of 5 cm diameter and thick nylon ropes.
    With a lot of practice it takes two hours to set up a tent here,including a connection with Rothera through the HF radio and a first cuppa tea to warm you up again,but,with the cold and lack of visibility,no controle over your fingers due to the thick gloves and ropes and looking which part goes where….,it takes way longer then that,heaven forbid we didn’t have to deal with such circumstances.

    We were lucky with relative warm circumstances instead.

    Normally a researcher stays in tents and circumstances as previously discribed for ten days to a forthnight…That sometimes means one is locked inside for a day or so due to weather conditions…Not for us,the weather was calm except for some nightly wind gusts and we were back at Rothera base on time for breakfast…..

    Saucages,eggs and baked beans…yes,this difenitely is a British Camp..

    We’ve tryed to reach some field stations nearby by Twinotter airplane,the Antarctic work horse,but due to the weather – heavy fog- we couldn’t get there so returned and landed on ski’s on a gletscher near Rothera.

    Our hut was well guarded:
    http://www.koninklijkhuis.nl/content.jsp?objectid=minazintra:41355

    (Picture was made by HRH The Prince of Orange)

    On the way back from Anchorage Island to Rothera we got a great show by two spermwhales with a grand final by two waving tails.
    Tonight we are invited for a “formal dinner” by our British hosts.

    We sometimes had tyrouble sending blogs out due to the bandwith used here and everyone using it too.This was the last blog from Antarctica.

    (The couple will fly home tomorrow via Santiago de Chile and will arrive at Amsterdam Schiphol wednesday morning)

  2. Pingback: The Royal Forums » Prince Albert of Monaco Travels in Antarctica

  3. Susan Blabla says:

    I wonder what it’s like up there. :o

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