Lion Airfield, Antarctica, WAP FRA-NEW

Lion Island  66° 39′ 32″ South, 140° 00′ 53″ East  is  small rocky island 0.2 mi NNE of Petrel Island in the Geologie Archipelago. It was surveyed and named by the French Antarctic Expedition of  1949-51 under André Liotard. The name derives from the rock summit of the island which has the shape of a lion’s head.
As for the Lion Runway, it is an artificial creation undertaken in the 1980s, which saw the destruction and the subsequent leveling of several islets in the Pointe-Géologie archipelago with dynamite,  to connect them together and create an airstrip, at a time when environmental standards were not the same as today.

Cuvier Island and  Lion Island  which were only 250 mts and 150 mts respectively to the North, the Pollux and Zeus islets as well as the Buffon Islands (two rocky islands 150 mts  to the East), disappeared under the earthworks of the Lion track.
Pollux Islet a rocky islet in the Pointe-Géologie archipelago (Adelie Land) and Zeus were themselves two rocky islets in the same site;  Zeus islet had the bad idea of ​​being located in the axis of this track, between the Pollux islet, 100 mts to the Northwest, and the smallest of the Buffon islands, 100 mts to the southeast. Lamarck Island,  a rocky island located 250 mts away to the southeast of Pétrels Island in the fateful  NW-SE alignment of Cuvier, Lion and Buffon in the central part of the Pointe-Géologie archipelago, was spared by the construction of the Lion trail.
The first work began in January 1983. A committee of wise people responsible for studying the ecological impact of the track recommended to the French government to stop the work at the beginning of 1984. This same committee recommended resuming construction of the track, considering that the project would only have a slight impact on the animal species living on site, resulting in only a 10% drop in fertility. Work resumed in November 1987 was completed on February 12, 1993. The excavations made it possible to create a dike connecting these islets separated by shallow arms of the sea, the whole constituting a track 1,100 mts long. A volume of 700,000 m3 of rocks were torn up during the operation.
In 1993, a huge heavy storm caused irreparable damage to the roadway, and the airfield was never operational but the site still has structures and buildings that serve  as depot, simply due to the fact that it’s quite close to DDU

At that time, the TAAF wishes to entrust the operation of the runway to the airport services company Sofrévia, but the General Directorate of Civil Aviation (DGAC) which sent technicians on site at the end of the work, issues a report unfavorable to the opening of the airfield. In question, the quality of the aggregates whose diameter is likely to constitute a danger for the reactors and propellers of large aircraft. Furthermore, the Air Force cannot makes iys planes available for qualification tests due to its participation in the Gulf was which monopolizes its resources. On January 26 and 27, 1994, a storm hit Pointe-Géologie. Giant waves break over the islands, the wind blows at 160 km/h with peaks of 200 km/h. This storm directly affects the runway, creating a breach 300 mts   long and 15 mts wide, which makes the runway unusable. The head of the TAAF research mission, Bernard Morlet, states that this damage is not attributable to a fault in the construction of the runway but to a lack of maintenance work, postponed as a cost-saving measure.

On September 21, 1994, the Minister of the Environment Michel Barnier formalized in the Council of Ministers the abandonment of the Adélie land trail.

Now, it will be quite possible that a couple of days operation by David Brunet FT4YM  could take place from what currently is the Lions Airfield on Lion Island, sometimes during the 2024-2025 summer campaign.
Stating the over reported evidences, maps, pictures and description,  Lion Airfield at 66° 39′ 32″ South, 140° 00′ 53″ East  on Lion Island, on Pointe-Géologie archipelago (Adelie Land), will enter on WAP-WADA Directory as  WAP FRA-NEW.
If/when David FT4YM will operate from there, a WAP reference number will be given.

Finger crossed though and GL to David for a possible activation of this “New One”!
TNX Mehdi F5PFP and David F4FKT/FT4YM