March 4, 2012

Monday, 4 March 1912


After a long morning of pulling over a sandy, rimed surface, Scott and his men managed 3 1/2 miles. They were forty-two miles from the next depot, with fuel for only three days. "It will be real bad [sic] if we get there and find the same shortage of oil," Scott worried. "Shall we get there? Such a short distance it would have appeared to us on the summit! I don't know what I should do if Wilson and Bowers weren't so determinedly cheerful over things." [1]

At One Ton, the weather was so bad that further travel was impossible; Cherry recorded temperatures of -34° and -37° at eight that evening. As he could not navigate, he feared missing Scott if he was not at the assigned rendezvous. There was no depot of dog food at One Ton, and in order to push on they would have had to kill some dogs to feed the others, running counter to Atkinson's instructions not to risk the dogs for the following season. "I had no reason," Cherry wrote later, "to suspect that the Polar Party could be in want of food." [2]


[1] R.F. Scott, diary, 4 March, 1912, quoted in Scott's Last Expedition, v.1.
[2] Apsley Cherry-Garrard, in The Worst Journey in the World, ch.8.

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