November 27, 2011
For Immediate Release:
TA LOEFFLER HEADS TO ANTARCTICA FOR NUMBER SIX
TA Loeffler departs St. John’s for Puenta Arenas, Chile on Tuesday November 29. Once there, she will meet her teammates and prepare for the flight to Antarctica. TA and her team from Rainier Mountaineering will be attempting to climb Mount Vinson, the highest peak in Antarctica.
Vinson Massif, the highest peak in Antarctica is located at 78°35′S, 85°25′W. It is truly massive at 21 km long and 13 km wide. It lies in the central part of the Antarctic Peninsula near the body of the continent. Vinson is part of the main ridge of the Sentinel Range of the Ellsworth Mountains. It was first climbed in 1966 by an American team.
The most remote of the Seven Summits, Vinson is 4897metres high (16,076 ft). Vinson’s summit will feel 1000 metres higher than it actually is because of the thinning of the earth’s atmosphere near the poles. It is located 1000 kilometres from the South Pole.
TA is an adventurer, author, and Memorial University professor from St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador. After climbing Mount McKinley in 2005, TA set a goal of climbing Mount Everest and the rest of the “Seven Summits,” the highest peaks on each of the seven continents. Vinson Massif will be TA’s sixth of the Seven Summits.
Throughout her Seven Summits journey, TA has aimed to inspire others to have big dreams and big goals by sharing her adventures online, in her book, in schools, and through keynote speaking. TA has presented her message of Big Dreams, Big Goals to over 27,000 youth in the province of Newfoundland and Labrador.
During the climb, TA’s team will have 24 hours of daylight and the average temperature for this time of the year is minus 27 degrees C (temperatures on the summit can be as low as minus 50). Vinson was named for US Senator, Carl Vinson, who promoted Antarctic exploration. The exact number is hard to know but it seems approximately 1200 people have summited Vinson Massif since 1966.
The team’s projected summit date is December 10, 2011 but there are many potential sources of delay such as weather and flight difficulties. If all goes according to schedule, TA should return to St. John’s just in time for Christmas. It will be possible to follow the progress of TA and her team at www.taloeffler.com.