Upper Hutt Chef From Frying Pan To Ice

16 January 2013

Army chef Corporal Krystal Teague at Scott Base in Antarctica.

Army chef Corporal Krystal Teague at Scott Base in Antarctica.

Army chef Corporal (CPL) Krystol Teague has gone from one extreme to the other - serving in the steamy heat of Darwin to the chilly cold in Antarctica.

CPL Teague, 27, who attended Chilton Saint James and Upper Hutt College, joined the Army in 2005. Before deploying, Krystol was based at Linton Military Camp where she served a la carte meals to senior ranked personnel.

"I also served at the Royal Australian Air Force base in Darwin from July to August last year as part of Exercise Pitch Black supporting the Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF). I had a two week break before coming to Antarctica in October," says CPL Teague.

In Antarctica Krystol is one of four NZ Defence Force personnel providing 24/7 communications support at Scott Base.

The communications operators perform a vital role. They are Scott Base’s link to the outside world and operators answer a wide range of calls from all over the world. They also monitor all the scientists and workers in the field, providing weather updates and news broadcasts. The team works in eight hour shifts.

The last 12 months have been eventful and exciting for Krystol, from getting married, to important family events, and her deployment to the ice.

"My husband works as a mechanic in the Army and has served in Antarctica so he encouraged me to apply.

"I enjoy the diversity here, the balance of work and social, and that the permanent staff want to make it work for everyone," adds CPL Teague, who returns to New Zealand in February.

The NZ Defence Force has been involved in Antarctica for over 50 years, supporting Antarctica New Zealand and the US Antarctic Programme, helping New Zealand play its part in the international effort to safeguard this pristine environment. 

Around 200 NZ Defence Force personnel will support the mission at various stages this season. The NZ Army Light Engineering Team will carry out a number of projects to ensure facilities and equipment can withstand the harsh winters. The mission will peak in February during the annual supply ship offload where Defence personnel will work round the clock in 24 hour daylight and freezing conditions to unload containers and move cargo to McMurdo and Scott Bases. Throughout the season the tri-Service Scott Base Support Team provide communications, plant operations, cargo handling and operations scheduling support.

The Royal New Zealand Air Force provides a number of C-130 and B757 flights moving supplies and personnel, an Airdrop Rigging Team assists with a C-17 training drop, a small number of personnel support the US Air National Guard with maintenance tasks, and the Harewood Terminal Team in Christchurch are kept busy throughout the season. The Air Force also provides emergency recovery and search and rescue standby for US aircraft operations.


For further information please contact the Defence Communications Group on 021 487 980.

This page was last reviewed on 4 February 2013.