Adventurers have long been making trips to either of the earth’s poles, however, no one till date thought of or dared to drive there. Now a Dutch adventurer has reached the South Pole and is returning to her hometown in Europe. Incidentally, she drove there and her unusual choice of vehicle was a tractor.
Dutch actress and adventurer Manon “Tractor Girl” Ossevoort arrived safely at the South Pole on Tuesday after chugging along on a tractor. She made it to the southern extreme from Europe, having traversed through all of Africa and across the frozen, barren wasteland of Antarctica, reported the Daily Mail.
Shortly after completing the first part of her journey, Ossevoort told AFP by satellite telephone, “It’s quite emotional, I’m very happy. It feels quite magical really, to have made this happen and arrived here!”
Speaking about the journey, Ossevoort said that the 2,500 kilometer (1,500 mile) trip across the largest single mass of ice on earth from Russia’s Novo base to the Pole had been the toughest.
“The worst part of the trip was the day that I was driving for hours and hours and could not go faster than between 0.5 and five kilometers (three miles) per hour. I really was worried then that the expedition could come to a halt if conditions would get just a little bit worse.”
Ossevoort chugged along over the rugged, icy landscape at a snail’s pace of just 10 km/hr. (6 mph) in a big red Massey Ferguson tractor. She explained it was “like rodeo driving.” The Dutch began her journey in 2005, taking four years to drive from her home village in the Netherlands to Cape Town at the southern tip of Africa. But as luck would have it, she missed the boat that was due to take her to Antarctica for the final leg due to delays, reported Raw Story.
Frustrated, Ossevoort returned to her hometown and spent another four years writing a book, working as a motivational speaker and desperately trying to get back on a tractor. With a complete sponsorship from tractor maker Massey-Ferguson and other companies, she has successfully reached the South Pole.
To commemorate the event, Ossevoort is planning to build huge snowman at the South Pole, one who will have a hollow belly. The adventurer will place all the hopes and dreams collected from people in Africa and around the world, which have been converted in digital format, inside the snowman.
While driving to South Pole itself seems to be a foolhardy task, doing it in a tractor seems to cross all boundaries of logic. However, Ossevoort maintains that it is the dreams and aspirations that should drive you.
[Image Credit | AFP, Simon Foster Photography/REX]