Shackleton’s Ross Sea Party, June 26, 1915: Plans for the sledging season on small resources

–from R. W. Richards’ account–

[the June 26 planning discussions continued]

“The meeting therefore was called to discuss how best these difficulties [the lack of food and equipment to meet the requirements of Shackleton’s overland expedition] could be overcome, and to plan the general sledging programme.

“Little could be done regarding old tents and primuses. In order to conserve clothing for the sledging season, it was arranged that a plentiful supply of canvas found in Scott’s hut should be cut up and made into windproof blouses and trousers to be worn about the base during the winter. This would save the lighter and more effective Burberry windproof garments for the sledging. The deficiency in footgear was met by making canvas boots and by cutting up old sleeping bags for fur boots. These home-made fur boots were warm but clumsy, and we used some of them in the later stages of our journey, when the issue fur boots had worn out.

“A great deal of thought was given to sledging plans. Owing to his ill health and the necessity of keeping the base meteorological readings going, it was decided to leave Stevens behind at Cape Evans all the time. The remaining nine were to undertake the sledging in parties of three. At this meeting general feeling was against the use of the four remaining dogs.”

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