We are thrilled to report that at approximately 9:30 UTC our team reached the South Pole. It was partly cloudy, and around -31 C with an 8 kt breeze out of the North (where else!). The day was a South Pole trifecta of sorts; a) they reached the South Pole, with Gwendal becoming the youngest person to reach the Pole - as far as we know, b) It was Aurelia's birthday, and c) it was the 105th anniversary of the discovery of the South Pole by Norwegian explorer Roald Amundesn - assuming you go by the official station time which is New Zealand time, and thus December 14th.
The day started with anticipation about whether or not the flight would happen. The last two days it was delayed due to weather. But with the all clear to depart the team flew 5.5 hours to a refueling station at 83 degrees South, and then an additional 2.5 hours to the South Pole. There they received a tour of the Amundsen Scott South Pole Station and celebrated with photos and toasts of Aurora Australis at the Ceremonial South Pole (which is about 10 meters from the Geographic South Pole at precisely 90 degrees South).
After approximately 2 hours the weather started to close in and the pilots, eager to beat the incoming system, called everyone back to the plane. They took off and made their way back to the refueling station where they are spending the night. When we heard from them it was just after 3 AM UTC - and they were ready to hit the sack after a long but very satisfying day.
Tomorrow they will have a late breakfast before making the flight back to the Oasis, their home away from home.
We expect to have some pictures to post tomorrow so check back again soon!