Despite a strong headwind creating windchill of -43c, the team achieved 14.6 nm today.
Listen to Henry Worsley's report, which is the most amusing yet received. He lists the various ailments and personal hygiene issues that the team currently have!
1. Sitrep No 50 as at 0930 hrs GMT 02 Jan 09
2. Distance Covered Today : 14.6 nm
3. Total Distance Covered : 604.9 nm
4. Hours travelled: 7.25
5. Daily Average to Date: 12.10 nm
6. Days to RV on Jan 9 at 97 Mile Point: 7
7. Distance to RV: 88.89 nm
8. Distance to Pole: 185.89 nm
9. Required Daily Average to achieve RV: 12.70 nm
10. Altitude: 9532 Ft ASL
Today's report is kindly sponsored by Edward Parker Wines.
Terribly hard work today. We started at 6:45 A.M. with a fairly good surface, which soon became very soft. We were sinking in over our ankles, and our broken sledge, by running sideways, added to the drag. We have been going uphill all day, and tonight are 11,034 ft. above sea level. It has taken us all day to do 10 miles 450 yards, though the weights are fairly light. A cold wind, with a temperature of minus 14°F, goes right through us now, as we are weakening from want of food, and the high altitude makes every movement an effort, especially if we stumble on the march.
My head is giving me trouble all the time. Wild seems the most fit of us. God knows we are doing all we can, but the outlook is serious if this surface continues and the plateau gets higher, for we are not traveling fast enough to make our food spin out and get back to our depot in time. I cannot think of failure yet. I must look at the matter sensibly and consider the lives of those who are with me. I feel that if we go on too far it will be impossible to get back over this surface, and then all the results will be lost to the world.
We can now definitely locate the South Pole on the highest plateau in the world, and our geological work and meteorology will be of the greatest use to science; but all this is not the Pole. Man can only do his best, and we have arrayed against us the strongest forces of nature. This cutting south wind with drift plays the mischief with us, and after ten hours of struggling against it one pannikin of food with two biscuits and a cup of cocoa does not warm one up much. I must think over the situation carefully tomorrow, for time is going on and food is going also.
This is the story of the “Farthest South” expedition, told by its leader. After enduring biting winds, short rations and crevasse-ridden glaciers for over a year, Shackleton’s party faced a desperate forced march to return to their ship, The Nimrod, or face being marooned on the ice.
Taken from Sir Ernest Shackleton’s own compelling chronicle of his first Antarctic expedition, written on his return in 1909.
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