H/t: Car Scoops
Long before the high-tech expedition vehicles of today, there was the 1939 Snow Cruiser, which arrived at Little America in the Bay of Whales, Antarctica with United States Antarctic Service Expedition in early January 1940. Unfortunately, it experienced many problems from the very start, as it was necessary to construct a ramp from timber to unload the vehicle itself. During the unloading process, one of the wheels broke through the ramp. Read more for a video and additional information.
Eventually, the Snow Cruiser was powered free from the ramp, but then failed to move through the snow and ice since the large, smooth. Why? Its treadless tires were originally designed for a large swamp vehicle, so they spun freely and provided very little forward movement. The crew had to attach the two spare tires to the front wheels of the vehicle and installed chains on the rear wheels. Problems aside, it was capable of transporting a biplane, which could land and take off on ice. Step inside, and you’ll see that it’s basically a mobile habitat, complete with living quarters, photograph darkroom, and machine shop. There were so many problems that it was eventually abandoned in Antarctica, only to be rediscovered under a deep layer of snow in 1958.
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Where is now? It was not moved from the original location of its rediscovery in 1958, but later vanished again due to shifting ice conditions. However, there is some speculation that the Snow Cruiser was retrieved by the Soviet Union during the Cold War, although the vehicle’s most likely destination is at the bottom of the Southern Ocean or covered under snow and ice.