Friday, September 15, 2006

Pole to Longyearbyen


“He’s done more than anyone else to bring the world into everyone’s living room.”
Who is this describing ?
Today in our 2nd classroom-based lesson we met him, at the start of his "Pole to Pole" journey: setting off with his own pole, taking a 16 hour flight in a specially adapted plane with ski landing gear, which had left its engine running so as not to allow the engine to freeze, and landing at Ny Alesund airport in a snowfall.
He of course, is Michael Palin: comedian, actor, author, and all round good egg and Geography ambassador (and he was born in South Yorkshire as a great many fine people were...)
Michael Palin has a very useful website at http://www.palinstravels.com, and this includes details of his journeys, which certainly take in lots of EXTREME ENVIRONMENTS.
A glance at the schedules of the various UK TV channels on Sky will usually throw up some repeats which are well worth catching.
The diagram above is copyright Prominent Palin productions and borrowed in good faith from the wesbsite to illustrate one of the rather nice features: a spinning globe which tracks his adventures.
The globe screenshot above shows the Svalbard leg of the trip, which included a snowmobile journey from Ny Alesund to Longyearbyen, via Kap Wik.
For details on the climate at the moment, we visited a number of useful sites:
http://www.unis.no/research/geology/Geo_research/Ole/SvalbardOutline.htm
http://haldde.unis.no/vaerdata/ - remember that the temperature today reached as high as 4 degrees celsius
http://www.awi-bremerhaven.de/MET/NyAlesund/wettertab.html - current conditions at Ny Alesund

The Video Clip discussed...

http://www.palinstravels.co.uk/book-636
- read the description of Michael's time on Svalbard - this is great !! - click next page to travel through - why not look for evidence of the EXTREME nature of Svalbard (or otherwise...)

The website also has details on Harald Solheim - this will be particularly useful for those of you who are actually doing your homework !! You can read about Harald and his lonely life.

http://www.palinstravels.co.uk/book-639&crithl=816 - extract from Pole to Pole...

Also don't forget to consider the map we started to produce with its details on Extreme Environments around the world.

And the magic words for today are "GIVE GEOGRAPHY ITS PLACE"

See you in B1 on Tuesday period 1

2 comments:

Tony Cassidy said...

Sounds a great lesson. Our case study will be in the South and also 'polar', so it might make interesting reading for KES students.

We start on Monday.

TC

Mister P said...

Oooh, we had someone who was so close to getting the magic word this week...
Maybe next time
Mister P