Hell on Ice

Hell on IceTwo explorers, Jay Watson and Peter Bland, attempt the ultimate South Pole adventure - crossing the Antarctic without sled dogs or mechanical help. They go to one of the most inhospitable places, prone to volatile weather and crevassed mountains
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The Antarctic Peninsula, a jagged finger jutting away from the Antarctic continent towards Cape Horn, is a dangerous lure for polar adventurers. Prone to volatile weather patterns, unstable sea ice, sheer glaciers and crevasse-riddled mountains, no one has ever managed to cross this peninsula unassisted.

It is considered one of the last great challenges for adventurers who rely on courage and strength alone. It is a challenge two friends, farmer Pete Bland and photographer Jay Watson, are determined to overcome.

Pete, the first Australian to reach both North and South Poles without assistance, and Jay, a participant of five previous Antarctic expeditions, are attempting to overcome the odds and cross the Peninsula in just 23 days — with only basic survival tools, kayaks and skis.

But despite Jay and Pete’s extensive experience, their latest adventure is shrouded in controversy. Australia’s Antarctic Division considers the trek perilous and fears the chartered yacht Tooluka is not adequate to ensure their safety. They want Pete and Jay to take out an insurance policy costing US$200,000 to cover all eventualities, including air evacuation. However, the Division cannot force Pete and Jay to take out the insurance, and the men certainly don’t have the funds to pay for it.

Regardless of the Division’s fears, Jay and Pete are determined to walk their way into the record books. In the tight timeframe they must climb the Tarrabine Peninsula, descend the Mondor Glacier, cross the melting sea ice, climb the sheer Victory Glacier and cross to Charlotte Bay. The weather is notoriously unstable in late summer; in just a few minutes total white out can occur.

The challenge is particularly dangerous for Pete. Just three years ago, while on an Antarctic adventure, he dived into the ice-cold sea to free a snarled propeller, an heroic act which led to a major aneurysm in one of his heart’s main arteries. Another incident like that and Pete could be dead.

Hell on Ice follows the pair’s controversial adventure from start to finish and shares the frustration, exhaustion, and disaster as they attempt to survive 23 days in one of the world’s most extreme and inhospitable regions.

in association with National Geographic Channels International

© 2003 Film Victoria, Vue Pty Ltd and Natural History New Zealand Ltd – All Rights Reserved

NTSC Widescreen 16:9 – Total Running Time: 48-minutes

DVD -R LogoThis program was duplicated to DVD-R media. Click for terms of sale

Interesting Links:

Peter Bland – The Ice Man
A Step too Far : Peter Bland and the obsession of Adventure
Click for the Full Script of this Program

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