Lunch Temp. -12º. Managed just 6 miles this morning. Started somewhat despondent; not relieved when pulling seemed to show no improvement. Bit by bit surface grew better, less sastrugi, more glide, slight following wind for a time. Then we began to travel a little faster. But the pulling is still _very_ hard; undulations disappearing but inequalities remain.
Twenty-six Camp walls about 2 miles ahead, all tracks in sight – Evans’ track very conspicuous. This is something in favour, but the pulling is tiring us, though we are getting into better ski drawing again. Bowers hasn’t quite the trick and is a little hurt at my criticisms, but I never doubted his heart. Very much easier – write diary at lunch – excellent meal – now one pannikin very strong tea – four biscuits and butter.
Hope for better things this afternoon, but no improvement apparent. Oh! for a little wind – E. Evans evidently had plenty.
R. 39. Temp. -20º. Better march in afternoon. Day yields 11.4 miles – the first double figure of steady dragging for a long time, but it meant and will mean hard work if we can’t get a wind to help us. Evans evidently had a strong wind here, S.E. I should think. The temperature goes very low at night now when the sky is clear as at present. As a matter of fact this is wonderfully fair weather – the only drawback the spoiling of the surface and absence of wind. We see all tracks very plain, but the pony-walls have evidently been badly drifted up. Some kind people had substituted a cairn at last camp 27. The old cairns do not seem to have suffered much.