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Scott's Last Expedition

Friday, March 17th 1911

We killed eleven seals at Pram Point on Wednesday, had lunch on the Point, and carried some half ton of the blubber and meat back to camp – it was a stiff pull up the hill.

Yesterday the last Corner Party started: Evans, Wright, Crean, and Forde in one team; Bowers, Oates, Cherry-Garrard, and Atkinson in the other. It was very sporting of Wright to join in after only a day’s rest. He is evidently a splendid puller.

Debenham has become principal cook, and evidently enjoys the task.

Taylor is full of good spirits and anecdote, an addition to the party.

Yesterday after a beautifully fine morning we got a strong northerly wind which blew till the middle of the night, crowding the young ice up the Strait. Then the wind suddenly shifted to the south, and I thought we were in for a blizzard; but this morning the wind has gone to the S.E. – the stratus cloud formed by the north wind is dissipating, and the damp snow deposited in the night is drifting. It looks like a fine evening.

Steadily we are increasing the comforts of the hut. The stove has been improved out of all recognition; with extra stove-pipes we get no back draughts, no smoke inside, whilst the economy of fuel is much increased.

Insulation inside and out is the subject we are now attacking.

The young ice is going to and fro, but the sea refuses to freeze over so far – except in the region of Pram Point, where a bay has remained for some four days holding some pieces of Barrier in its grip. These pieces have come from the edge of the Barrier and some are crumbling already, showing a deep and rapid surface deposit of snow and therefore the probability that they are drifted sea ice not more than a year or two old, the depth of the drift being due to proximity to an old Barrier edge.

I have just taken to pyjama trousers and shall don an extra shirt – I have been astonished at the warmth which I have felt throughout in light clothing. So far I have had nothing more than a singlet and jersey under pyjama jacket and a single pair of drawers under wind trousers. A hole in the drawers of ancient date means that one place has had no covering but the wind trousers, yet I have never felt cold about the body.

In spite of all little activities I am impatient of our wait here. But I shall be impatient also in the main hut. It is ill to sit still and contemplate the ruin which has assailed our transport. The scheme of advance must be very different from that which I first contemplated. The Pole is a very long way off, alas!

Bit by bit I am losing all faith in the dogs – I’m afraid they will never go the pace we look for.

2 Responses to “Friday, March 17th 1911”

  1. Caryg says:

    Hi,

    It appears your RSS feed is broken in IE8, seems to work OK in Safari. I get no updates and if I click on an RSS link I get the following error

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    Cary

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