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What National Geographic Never Shows

November 9, 2014

SONY DSCYour National Geographic view of Antarctica is the pristine, endless icy expanse. What it takes to get there, however, is eight hours in the cargo hold of an Air Force prop plane. Barely heated. No restroom–just a cardboard box, like they gave the Ebola nurse.


You have to sling your own gear onto a helicopter. Once you get out to the mountain camp, be sure to get away from the helicopter as quick as possible, or its liftoff will shred your tent.


At the desert mountains, no live penguins–only dead ones that lost their way. This actually is a deceased seal, scraped to the bone by katabatic winds, dry winds that blow down the mountain.


No human wastes allowed anywhere on the continent. Voilà the urine barrel!


  1. November 9, 2014 7:09 pm

    Wow! I, for one, am glad to know this — and it is what I would have expected given my own travels — though in recounting I usually do the Nat’l Geo stuff. Important to know this & I’m glad you all are NOT leaving human waste, however unpleasant and inconvenient to do so.

  2. November 10, 2014 1:44 pm

    You be careful out there, Joan!

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