The Mothballed Tucker Sno-Cats from a 1966 Antarctic Expedition

abandoned-tucker-sno-cat-belgium (Image: BrianPrecious Decay. Tucker Sno-Cat Type 743s)

“In an unassuming barn on the outskirts of a unremarkable Belgian town, lie three Tucker Sno-Cat Type 743s, remnants of the Belgian/Dutch collaborative Antarctic expedition of 1966,” writes user jST on the UK Urbex forum.

The massive four-tracked snow vehicles made the journey to the South Pole in support of the Roi Baudoin Base, which had been established by Belgium – one of the 12 original signatories of the Antarctic Treaty – around 1958.

abandoned-tucker-sno-cat-belgium-2 (Image: BrianPrecious Decay)

As jST writes, the isolated facility served as a geophysical observatory as well as “an operating base for geographical, glaciological, and geological mapping of the neighboring coastal and mountain areas.” But the Roi Baudoin Base was ultimately decommissioned and closed in 1967.

At that point, the Oregon-built Tucket snowcats were returned to Europe and ultimately placed in storage. It’s understood that they have lingered there silently, slowly rusting away, ever since.

abandoned-tucker-sno-cat-belgium-3 (Image: BrianPrecious Decay)

The fact that the long-mothballed Sno-Cat Type 743s made it back from Antarctica seems impressive, yet to have remained in quiet storage for almost half a century, away from the clutches of scrap dealers, makes their disposition all the more fascinating.

As Brian from Precious Decay remarked on his Flickr page: “These snowcats have made literally a hell of a journey, but made it back home. Now they’re stuffed in a shed and are never to be used anymore.”

abandoned-peugeot (Image: BrianPrecious Decay)

The abandoned Antarctic snow vehicles, however, aren’t alone. Stored in the barn alongside the monster machines is a rather forlorn vintage Peugeot car, though we doubt that ever made the trip to the most isolated region of the world.

Related – Urban Explorer Discovers Vintage Wartime Vehicles in ‘Abandoned’ Warehouse

 
 


 
 
 

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