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Daily Archives: 27. January 2015 − News & Stories


Cape Royds

After this great afternoon at Cape Evans, we figured we might as well continue with the momentum we were just in, so on to Cape Royds, just a few miles north of Cape Evans. This is where Shackleton’s Nimrod-expedition was based from 1907 to 1909, not his most famous, but certainly his most successful expedition. And the only one from which he left a hut in Antarctica.

So, as usual we went quickly out just before dinner to have a look at the shore if everything is as it should be for the evening landing – and what do we see, Backdoor Bay is completely filled with ice. Not the good, solid fast ice over which you can just walk, but a wide rim of brash ice, too densely packed by the stiff breeze to drive through by boat, but far too small pieces to walk on. Not very helpful.

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So we do what one should always do and don’t worry about what we can’t do, but rather enjoy the equally recent and pleasant memories from the afternoon at Cape Evans and the views of Mount Erebus in its full splendor, with its famous little steam cloud being ejected from the 3,794 m crater into a clear blue antarctic evening sky.

Kap Evans

Cape Evans, sacred ground of antarctic history and a stunningly beautiful place in this kind of weather. Base of Scott’s last expedition, with the Terra Nova. The cross is a memorial to Spencer-Smith, Haywood and Mackintosh. Now I am sure you have all done your antarctic homework so you will know during which expedition these 3 men were here and died ..? Yes, it was of course during the Aurora-expedition, the logistical counterpiece of Shackleton’s Endurance-expedition. It isn’t quite true when it is said that Sir Ernest always brought all of his men back home alive.

The main focus of attention was, of course, the famous hut of Scott’s last expedition. A time machine that takes you a century back into the heroic days of antarctic exploration. The smell of seal blubber and hay for the ponies is still in the air. The hut seems to be ready to welcome the explorers back at any time, who are just outside and may be for some time. A sacred place.

Mount Erebus is towering behind the hut in all its splendor today, great views over the barren hills of black volcanic rocks at Cape Evans. There is still fast ice to the south, icebergs frozen in between islands: Inaccessible Island and Razorback Islands, all of them important landmarks for Scott and his men. And of course for Shackleton during the Nimrod days (1907-09).

Memorial cross for the 3 men who died during the Aurora expedition, Shackleton's Ross Sea party

Mount Erebus

Talking about Mount Erebus … 🙂
 
 
 

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Cape Crozier

The day could have had a very early start with a Zodiac cruise at Cape Crozier, where the Ross Ice Shelf meets Ross Island. But the wind was screaming around the ship, zodiacs were not even a remote option. Nevertheless it was interesting to have seen the famous cape, even from a distance. Next to the scenic and animalistic impressions, it is the „Worst journey in the World“ (splendidly narrated by Apsley Cherry-Garrard) which made Cape Crozier famous. I have to summarize this wild story in a few sentences, but not now. Now I have to watch out. Mount Erebus should come into view soon, and the Transantarctic Mountains are already on the horizon. We are heading for Cape Royds and Cape Evans now. Fingers crossed that it will work out well.

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