December 1914: Weddell Sea pack ice

–from Frank Hurley’s account “Shackleton’s Argonauts”–

“Although barely embarked upon our adventure, we had already passed into a world of peril and wonder. From the crow’s-nest at the stern mainmast, our eyes surveyed a vast inhospitable waste—a stupendous and soul-perturbing scene. From horizon to horizon the sea presented itself as a vast plain, tessellated with dazzling, irregular sheets of ice, resembling a colossal jigsaw puzzle with pieces varying in area from a few square yards to expanses of square miles. The sections were seamed with the endless ramifications of a maze of waterways and pools. Each waterway or ‘lead’ was at treacherous trap, gaping the jaws of a titan’s vice, ready to close and crush the intruder.”

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