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Friday, 16 February 2007

The Antarctic Ice Sheet

The continent of Antarctica is covered by a thick sheet of ice, averaging over 2 kilometers deep. This frozen mass holds some ninety percent of the fresh water in the world, although much of the continent is paradoxically very dry. Precipitation levels measured at single-digit centimeters per year are common, making the icy expanse in fact one of the "driest" places on Earth.

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We began our journey deep into Patagonia from Carretera Austral with a three-and-a-half-day journey past fjords and glaciers on NavimagNavimag is a large barge that carries all the supplies down to the southern part of Chile.  The trip used to be solely for transport, but occasionally backpackers would hitch a ride until it became so popular that the company built many cabins where there used to be cargo; now their business is largely a tourist enterprise.  It is the cruise for those who can’t afford to cruise.

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