An intangible feeling

“An intangible feeling of uneasiness made me leave my tent about 11 pm. I started to walk across the floe to warn the watchman to look carefully for cracks when the floe lifted on the crest of a swell and cracked under my feet as I was passing the men’s tent. [It] was one of the dome tents, and it began to stretch apart as the ice opened… I rushed forward, helped some men to come out from under the canvas…

“The crack had widened to about 4 feet and I saw a whitish object floating in the water. It was a sleeping bag with a man inside. I was able to grasp it and, with a heave, lifted man and bag on the floe. A few seconds later the ice-edges came together again with tremendous force.”

— Ernest Shackleton, South

“Curiously enough, it was Sir Ernest himself who rescued Holness. No doubt he was spending one of his usual wakeful nights and so was up and out in an instant. First he saved Holness’ sleeping bag and then the man himself, whose chief lament was that he had lost all the baccy out of his bag.”

— Thomas Orde-Lees

“Every movement [Holness] now made with his legs and arms, there was a crackle of icy clothes.”

— Walter How

About Ernest Shackleton

Polar Explorer. Leader of the Imperial Trans-Antarctic Expedition, 1914-1917.
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