February 6, 2011

Monday, 6 February 1911


The blizzard raged on. "The poor horses are having a hard time and are so frozen they can hardly eat," wrote Gran. [1]


Framheim, February 1911. [2]

"We have now pitched 14 of the 16-man tents here," wrote Amundsen in his diary. "It looks like a little town." [3] Half of the tents were for the dogs to sleep in, and the rest were for storage of dog food and other supplies.

"Now there is so little to fetch on board, that there is only work for a few sledges a day. I have therefore decided to go south with 3 men -- Johansen, Prestrud and Helmer Hanssen -- to put out depots. The other 4 will stay here at the base and continue working." [4]

In a letter to Leon that would go with the Fram, Amundsen wrote, "It is true, I have raised wages by 50% for everyone who will remain aboard the ship. I do not know whether the expedition coffers can stand this but it will have to stand the test. You best understand what must be done and just arrange everything in the way you think best." He outlined his plans for laying depots for the journey to the Pole -- Leon was going to reveal these to the press -- then added, "Assuming Nansen is interested, then let him know this. I thought I might write to him from here, but I am so uncertain what he makes of it all that I have refrained. Send him my regards.... It seems to me, as things, now stand, that this contest might interest the world."


[1] Tryggve Gran, diary, 6 February, 1911, quoted in The Norwegian With Scott : Tryggve Gran's Antarctic Diary 1910-1913 ([London] : National Maritime Museum, c1984), p.55.
[2] Roald Amundsen Bildearkiv, Nasjonalbiblioteket.
[3] Roald Amundsen, diary, 6 February, 1911, quoted by Roland Huntford in The Amundsen Photographs (London : Hodder & Stoughton, c1987), p.85.
[3] Roald Amundsen, diary, [date not given], quoted by Roland Huntford in The Amundsen Photographs (London : Hodder & Stoughton, c1987), p.86.
[4] Roald Amundsen, letter to Leon Amundsen, 7 February, 1911, quoted by Tor Bomann-Larsen in Roald Amundsen (Stroud, Gloucestershire : Sutton, c2006, c1995), p.91.

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