From 1968 to 1969, Wally led the British Trans-Arctic Expedition, a 3,800-mile surface crossing of the Arctic Ocean, from Alaska to Spitsbergen, which some historians had billed as ‘the last great journey on Earth.’
He and four others arrived at the pole on 14 December 1911, five weeks ahead of a British party led by Robert Falcon Scott as part of the Terra Nova Expedition.
For centuries, European explorers sought a navigable passage as a possible trade route to Asia. An ice-bound northern route was discovered in 1850 by the Irish explorer Robert McClure.
The first confirmed sighting of mainland Antarctica is attributed to a Russian expedition led by Fabian Gottlieb von Bellingshausen and Mikhail Lazarev, discovering an ice shelf at Princess Martha Coast..
Jacob Roggeveen was a Dutch explorer who was sent to find Terra Australis, but instead became the first European to visit Easter Island, Bora Bora, Maupiti of the Society Islands, and Samoa.
The first known landing in Australia by Europeans was by Dutch navigator Willem Janszoon in 1606. Twenty-nine other Dutch navigators explored the western and southern coasts in the 17th century, and dubbed the continent New Holland.
The first European to discover the Falls was the Spanish Conquistador Ãlvar NÃºÃ±ez Cabeza de Vaca in 1541, after whom one of the falls on the Argentine side is named.
The first depiction of Terra Australis on a globe was probably on Johannes Schöner’s lost 1523 globe on which Oronce Fine is thought to have based his 1531 map of the world.
On 15 March 1503, Vasco da Gama, crossing from India to East Africa, sighted what was almost certainly Silhouette Island and the next day, Desroches Island. The granitic islands began to appear on Portuguese charts as the Seven Sisters.