“I was a 52-year-old man, married with two teenage children, trying to get down to Antarctica. “Everyone has an Antarctica”, Thomas Pynchon once wrote. As a young bloke standing on the edge of a windy, wintery Melbourne beach… I just knew, staring towards the cold vastness of the Southern Ocean, that one day I’d go beyond the horizon.” Dave Morgan
Ice Journey is the biography of Vietnam veteran Dave Morgan, a self confessed ordinary bloke who has lead anything but an ordinary life.
From the terror of a young soldier fighting far from home to exhilaration in Antartica far from the rest of the world, Ice Journey is a story of vivid landscapes and adventure before ending in a shocking, heart-wrenching final twist.
Like many of his fellow Vietnam vets, Dave tried to present a “normal” face to the world while battling Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). It was a debilitating struggle that sparked an obsession to escape the bonds of suburban Australia and embark on a journey to Antarctica, an experience that would change his life forever.
In his early fifties and unable to find peace, Dave turned to the seclusion and hardship of Antarctic research, earning a rare and highly sort after posting to Macquarie Island and then Davis and Casey Stations. Carrying his deeply buried demons from the jungles of Vietnam to the icy peaks of Antarctica; Dave’s journey fulfilled a lifelong dream, while making him feel safe for the first time in 30 years.
His experiences as an expeditioner on the starkly beautiful, harsh and inhospitable ‘ice’ was at once intoxicating and isolating, providing the catalyst for Dave to finally face his fears. It is an emotional journey that transports the reader from the terror of a young soldier fighting far away from home, to exhilaration on the ice far from the rest of the world.
While the ghosts of Vietnam still exist inside Dave, Ice Journey is an invitation to share in an incredible journey, from the moment that would destroy his long cherished dream to ultimately finding a new way forward and the beginning of a new life.
“Antarctica gets into your soul and consumes you–the beauty, the contrasts, the challenge of man working with Mother Nature. Not everybody who goes down gets consumed, but those that do are transformed.”