“The Endurance deserved all that could be said in praise of her. Shipwrights had never done sounder or better work; but how long could she continue the fight under such conditions? We were drifting into the congested area of the western Weddell Sea, the worst portion of the worst sea in the world, where the pack, forced on irresistibly by wind and current, impinges on the western shore and is driven up in huge corrugated ridges and chaotic fields of pressure. The vital question for us was whether or not the ice would open sufficiently to release us, or at least give us a chance of release, before the drift carried us into the most dangerous area.
“There was no answer to be got from the silent bergs and the grinding floes, and we faced the month of October with anxious hearts.”
— Ernest Shackleton, South