Wednesday it will be exactly 100 years since the first human reached the South Pole. “One of the greatest achievements in modern human history,” Norwegian Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg said Wednesday in Antarctica at 40 degrees below zero, while unveiling an ice bust of the Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen.

On 14 December 1912, Norwegians Roald Amundsen, Helmer Hanssen, Sverre Hassel, Olav Bjaaland and Oscar Wisting won the race to the pole from a British team led by the adventurer Robert Scott. The Briton used horses and poorly tested machines, scientist Amundsen used dogs to get to the South Pole and, according to plan, also shot them as food for the team.

The Norwegian team left the South Pole alive, while Scott and a second Briton died on the way back to base camp. | © 2011 Marcel Burger for ANP News Agency (original published in Dutch on 14 December 2011)