Story: Antarctica and New Zealand

Loading at Christchurch, 2007

Loading at Christchurch, 2007

As both New Zealand's Scott Base and the United States' McMurdo Station are on Ross Island, New Zealand and American personnel share flights to and from Antarctica. A plane bound for Antarctica is shown here being loaded. For most of the year the planes land on sea ice. Early in the season when the sea ice is thick and strong, US Galaxy and Starlifter planes are used. When the ice gets thinner, Royal New Zealand Air Force Hercules are used. Old and noisy, they are known for their ability to take off and land on short runways and their safety (a four-engine Hercules can land with only one engine working). When the sea-ice landing strip becomes unusable, a runway is made on the Ross Ice Shelf, and US Hercules equipped with skis are then the plane of choice.

Using this item

United States Air Force
Reference: 070820-F-2034C-030
Photograph by Shane A. Cuomo

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How to cite this page:

Nigel Roberts, 'Antarctica and New Zealand - Developments after the Second World War', Te Ara - the Encyclopedia of New Zealand, (accessed 24 April 2024)

Story by Nigel Roberts, published 20 Jun 2012