Geographic South Pole

Landmark in South Pole

The Geographic South Pole (Geodetic Pole) marks the spot at one end of the Earth’s axis of rotation (the other being the North Pole). It is indicated by a 4m steel pole topped by a medallion designed by the previous year’s winterover crew; each design is unique. Since it sits at the intersection of all the time zones, a quick nip around the Pole takes you right around the world.

The ice at the Pole moves about 10m per year in the direction of W 43° (toward Brazil), which means that the marker itself has to be recalculated and moved each summer. The American flag is planted about a meter from the Pole sign, which is also moved each year to adjust for the moving ice sheet. The sign reads:

Geographic South Pole

Roald Amundsen, December 14, 1911 ‘So we arrived and were able to plant our flag at the geographical South Pole’

Robert F Scott, January 17, 1912 ‘The Pole, Yes, but under very different circumstances from those expected’

Elevation: 9301ft (2835m)