Mikkelson CairnPrint Page Print this page

The Mikkelsen Cairn marks the discovery of the Vestfold Hills, and the first known landing by a woman, Carolyn Mikkelsen, in Antarctica in 1935.

The rock cairn and a wooden mast were erected by the landing party led by Captain Klarius Mikkelsen of the Norwegian whaling ship Thorshavn and including Caroline Mikkelsen, Captain Mikkelsen's wife, the first woman to set foot on East Antarctica. The cairn was discovered by Australian National Antarctic Research Expedition field parties in 1957 and again in 1995.

On 20 February 1935 Klarius Mikkelsen, captain of the Norwegian vessel Thorshavn, sighted the Vestfold Hills (named after a Norwegian province which he thought it resembled) near the present Davis Station. The expedition was sponsored by Lars Christenson, a Norwegian shipowner and whaling magnate with a keen interest in Antarctic exploration.

A lifeboat containing Mikkelsen and his Danish-born wife Caroline landed on the coast and buried a provision depot under a cairn. This site of the first landing of a woman in Antarctica was relocated in December 1995. 


Address:Vestfold Hills, Australian Antarctic Territory
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -68.57894
Long: 77.969217
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
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Monument Type:Monument
Monument Theme:Landscape
Actual Event Start Date:20-February-1935
Actual Event End Date:20-February-1935


Actual Monument Dedication Date:Wednesday 20th February, 1935
Source: ATHS
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au
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