February 14, 2011

Tuesday, 14 February 1911


Gran and his pony again dropping behind, Scott consulted Oates as to what they might manage, "and he cheerfully proposed 15 miles [half again their usual distance] for the day! This piqued me somewhat and I marched till the sledge meter showed 6 1/2 miles." [1]

By that time Gran and Weary Willy were almost a mile behind. "What happened never became clear," Cherry wrote. "Poor Weary, it seems, was in difficulties in a snow-drift: the dogs of one team being very hungry took charge of their sledge and in a moment were on the horse, to all purposes a pack of ravenous wolves. Gran and Weary made a good fight and the dogs were driven off, but Weary came into camp without his sledge, covered with blood and looking very sick." [2]

"The incident is deplorable and the blame widespread," Scott wrote, but naming only himself "for not supervising these matters more effectively and for allowing W.W. to get so far behind."


The first depot-laying party returned to Framheim, a trip of about 160 nautical miles in five days.

"A fine performance of our dogs this, "Amundsen noted with satisfaction in his diary, "40 geographical miles yesterday -- of which 10 miles with heavy load and then 51 1/2 miles today -- I think they will hold their own with the ponies on the Barrier." [3]


[1] R. F. Scott, diary, 14 February, 1911, quoted in Scott's Last Expedtition, v.1.
[2] Apsley Cherry-Garrard, The Worst Journey in the World, ch.5.
[3] Roald Amundsen, diary, 15 February, 1911, quoted by Roland Huntford in Scott and Amundsen (New York : Putnam, 1980, c1979), p.347.

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