"The Snow Cruiser"-Antarctica's Abandoned Behemoth

2,486,611 views
  • 8 months ago
  • 41.9K
  • 1.9K

What happened to the Antarctic Snow Cruser? In 1939 a fifty-five feet long, twenty feet wide monster, weighing 37 tonnes and designed to have a range of over 8000 miles arrived on Antarctica. Built in the late 1930s for Richard E. Byrd’s Third Antarctic Expedition, it was one of the most incredible ventures in engineering history, not just in its size and scale but also her failure as an exploratory vehicle and subsequent disappearance.

In this video, I look at the background, design and disappearance of the Snow Cruser and ask what happened to this incredible vehicle (I'm afraid it's not good news).

More photos, video and sources on my website: https://calumraasay.wordpress.com/portfolio/the-snow-cruiser-antarcticas-abandoned-behemoth/


Source & Reading:

The best website for archives and information on the cruiser: http://www.joeld.net/snowcruiser/snowcruiser.html

Best overview and details on the design and history of the cruiser:
https://www.autoclassics.com/posts/reviews/1939-antarctic-snow-cruiser

An Atlantic article with great photos of the cruiser:
http://www.theatlantic.com/photo/2016/01/the-antarctic-snow-cruiser-updated/424851/

Interview with someone who saw it in person:
https://web.archive.org/web/20070129102944/http://antarcticsun.usap.gov/oldissues99-2000/99_1024/byrdflop.html

Colour footage of the cruiser:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KUXq8NWh5vg

"With Byrd at the South Pole"- a documentary Byrd made (where I got most of the stock footage) that went on to be the first documentary to win an Oscar. - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nyv0Ss18Py4

Books on the subject:

Antarctica: A Biography by David Day
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Antarctica-Biography-David-Day/dp/0199670552

All the information you could ever need on the attached plane:
http://www.joeld.net/snowcruiser/wings_feb_1980.html

For Shackeltons/Scott
Shackelton: By Endurance We Conquer by Michael Smith

An Unsung Hero- Tom Crean by Michael Smith

Corrections:

The Ferguson tractors show at roughly 4:00 are not the tractors Byrd used during his second expedition. This is placeholder footage of Fergressons used in the 1950s as I couldn't find any photos or videos of the tractors used in the previous 'little America' expedition. Upon Reviewing my footage I found there was actually a clip of the tractors in Byrd's 'Discovery' film made about the second expedition, linked to 26:24 in this video- https://youtu.be/fnmxsj-prhM?t=1577

Twitter......................►https://twitter.com/calumraasay
Instagram................►http://instagram.com/calumraasay
Website....................►http://calumgillies.com
Facebook.................►http://facebook.com/calumgilliesart

Questions or queries to:
[email protected]