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Antarctic Division
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Mawson Stories


These are a collection of stories and journals written by or about the early expeditioners at Mawson

Mawson 1962 Wintering Party © AAD      

Enthusiasm is mounting for the upcoming Mawson 65th Anniversary Celebration in Hobart this September. Stories & photos are slowly coming in and we encourage you to add to this page by sending in any anecdotes from your OWN time down South at Mawson. The more the merrier!! Send to

Note: The stories are listed by reverse chronoloigal order in which they are received; i.e. the most recently received is at the top


Australia's Antarctic Rebuilding Program at Mawson 1979 - 1987
By Bob McEwan
In 1981 Bob McEwan, Chief Structural Engineer of the Australian Construction Services, formed a team of engineers and established a research program to design and construct new building at Australia's three continental stations. The oldest station was Mawson where some of the huts dated back to the 1940's. They were small, lacked privacy and a fire risk. Bob spent two summers down south supervising the work, and oversaw the whole project.


By Ian Bird
Electronics Engineer, Ian Bird tells the story of his spring traverse into the Southern Prince Charles Mountains with geologist Rick Ruker and Senior Diesel Mechanic Neville "Gringo" Collins to map and collect geology samples. For the 22-year-old Bird it was the adventure of a lifetime. His job was to maintain communications with Mawson, and help run the dog teams.


MAWSON 1961-1963

By Ian McNaughton
Cosray Physicist, Ian McNaughton recounts what living & working in the Antarctic was like during his 18 months down South at Mawson from 24 Jan 1961 - 18 Mar 1962 & Dec 1962 - Mar 1963. He describes his job, a brain operation, visits from the Russians, dog trips and helicopter travel with numerous photographs and some maps.


Mawson to Enderby Land, 1974

By Dave Luders
OIC, Dave Luders recounts a traverse to Enderby Land in 1974 to set up a base camp for the 1974/5 summer operations. He describes navigating by astrocompass, blizzards, temperatures of -30 degrees for weeks on end, tractors breaking through snowbridges, crevasses, Knuckey Peaks and more - a high point of his 1974 winter.
The story includes photographs and a map of the traverse undertaken.