February 16-21, 1912: Frank Wild’s landing on a newly discovered coast–Queen Mary Land

–from expedition leader Douglas Mawson’s book “The Home of the Blizzard”–

“After a consultation, Davis and Wild decided that, under the circumstances, this floating formation [an ice-shelf joined to the land] was to be considered as a possible foundation upon which to build a hut.

“Wild, Harrisson and Hoadley went to examine it, walking across the floe to which the shp was anchored.  The cliff stood eighty to one hundred feet in height above the sea-ice, so that the formation, in total thickness, must have attained to at least as much as six hundred feet.  Assisted by ramps of snow accumulated on the floe in the lee of the cliff, the ascent with ice-axes and alpine ropes was fairly easy. . . .

“After a brief examination, Wild and his party unanimously agreed to seize upon this last opportunity.  As a site for a wintering station nothing so daring had been attempted before, for they were threatened with the possibility of the breaking away of part of the ice-shelf, setting them adrift on nothing more substantial than an iceberg.

“The work of discharging the stores was at once commenced.  To raise the packages from the floe to the top of the ice-shelf, a “flying -fox” was rigged. . . .Landing operations continued for four days in all weathers.  During that time thirty-six tons of stores were raised on to the shelf-ice one hundred feet above sea-level.

“The parting came early on February 21, when the ship’s company gave their hearty farewell cheers to Wild and  his seven companions who were to build a hut and reside during the ensuing year in novel and anxious circumstances.”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s