Full Polar Equipment

“All hands were issued with full polar equipment, as follows: 1 sweater (thick Jaeger), 1 pair Amundsen pattern Burberry boots, 1 pair Shetland wool mitts, 1 woollen helmet, 2 pair soft wool bed socks, 1 pair mittens, 1 pair finnesko (reindeer skin) boots, 1 Shetland wool jersey, 2 Jaeger shirts, 2 Jaeger combinations, 1 pair felt mitts, 1 pair fur mitts, 1 pair lambskin mitts, 1 pair Jaeger slippers, 3 pair thick woollen socks, 2 pair Shetland wool socks.”

— Thomas Orde-Lees

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Dogloo village, 1915

“All hands engaged in building igloos, or as the sailors term them, dogloos, from ice blocks and snow.”

— Frank Hurley

“Worsley took a party to the floe on the 26th and started building a line of igloos and “dogloos” round the ship. These little buildings were constructed, Esquimaux fashion, of big blocks of ice, with thin sheets for the roofs. Boards or frozen sealskins were placed over all, snow was piled on top and pressed into the joints, and then water was thrown over the structures to make everything firm. The ice was packed down flat inside and covered with snow for the dogs, which preferred, however, to sleep outside except when the weather was extraordinarily severe. The tethering of the dogs was a simple matter. The end of a chain was buried about eight inches in the snow, some fragments of ice were pressed around it, and a little water poured over all. The icy breath of the Antarctic cemented it in a few moments.”

— Ernest Shackleton, South

“Putting the dogs ashore meant each dog could be given a longer lead than was possible on deck and therefore more freedom. Fastening the chains is a simple matter. A hole is made in the ice with a crowbar 6in deep, filled up with water, which instantly freezes and secures the chain tightly enough to hold back a steamroller.”

— Thomas Orde-Lees

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Macklin and friends


Dr. Alexander Macklin and a few friends, 1915.

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The barking will be less audible


“Most of the dog kennels have been put out on the floe and the dogs in future will live there. This will be a great relief to us, for there will be no more cleaning up to do on board, no more rattling of chains at night, and the barking will be less audible.”

— Thomas Orde-Lees

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Much to their delight


“Dogs all placed on shore, much to their delight.”

— Frank Hurley

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Momentous questions


“We must wait for the spring, which may bring us better fortune. If I had guessed a month ago that the ice would grip us here, I would have established our base at one of the landing-places at the great glacier. But there seemed no reason to anticipate then that the fates would prove unkind. This calm weather with intense cold in a summer month is surely exceptional. My chief anxiety is the drift. Where will the vagrant winds and currents carry the ship during the long winter months that are ahead of us? We will go west, no doubt, but how far? And will it be possible to break out of the pack early in the spring and reach Vahsel Bay or some other suitable landing-place? These are momentous questions for us.”

— Ernest Shackleton, South

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Ship drawings

“We now practically cease being a ship and become a shore station.” — Frank Hurley


Drawings by Frank Hurley, reproduced from Hurley’s diaries in Shackleton’s Photographer (CD), Shane Murphy, 2001.

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