Friday, 16 April 2010

Arctic crossing by balloon

The recent news that Jean-Louis Etienne has made the first Arctic crossing by balloon, provides an excuse to mention Salomon August Andree's ill-fated 1897 attempt. The New Yorker has a big feature about how the Swedish explorer and two companions set out on the first flight to the North Pole, from Spitsbergen in the well-equipped balloon Ornen. They were never heard of again although their remains were discovered in 1930, along with Andree's diary. This revealed that the balloon had been forced down 500 miles from the North Pole.

Previous posting here, but for fascinating insight into the expedition, I'd recommend the Andree chapter in Geoff Powter's We Cannot Fail. Picture below from the Guardian, November 25 1930.

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