Shackleton’s Ross Sea Party, July 21st, 1916: “We have made up our minds to store large quantities of blubber in case the relief ship does not put in an appearance.”

–from Ernest Joyce’s account “The South Polar Trail”

“All was going well until one day Richy collapsed. He threw up his arms, gave a cry, and fell down in a faint. Cope was soon to his aid: the long journey had strained his heart. No words could express my sorrow when I heard the news. He had been my constant companion for ten months, and a better pal amidst toil and trouble never existed. Cope gave me every hope, with that I had to be comforted. All the same I felt a broken man.

“Another accident. While ski-ing down a slope, Wild came to grief; it means a fortnight in his bunk. Weather greatly improved. The sun effects amongst the opalescent clouds are wonderful to behold, no artist could portray them. A week to-day the sun returns. I am training the puppies, but have made a mistake; that is, I should have tied them up before putting them in harness; they were frolicsome. In a week, they travelled in harmony with Oscar, Gunner, and Towser—an excellent team.

“We have made up our minds to store large quantities of blubber in case the relief ship does not put in an appearance.”

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