"[115] The condition of Oates's feet became an increasing anxiety, as the group approached the summit of the Beardmore Glacier and prepared for the descent to the Barrier. [102] Because of slower than expected progress, Scott decided to take the dogs on further. Scott brought expert Tryggve Gran on the Terra Nova excursion, in hopes that he might help train the rest of the expedition's crew to ski. [114] On 7 February, they began their descent and had serious difficulty locating a depot. [118] The low temperatures caused poor surfaces which Scott likened to "pulling over desert sand";[119] he described the surface as "coated with a thin layer of woolly crystals, formed by radiation no doubt. Because Amundsen had kept his expedition a secret from the public, Robert Falcon Scott and his Terra Nova Expedition set out for the South Pole just a few weeks later. The Museum holds over 40,000 items relating to Scott's Terra Nova Expedition of 1910 so I thought I would show you details of one of the treasures that remains hidden from view. They built a stone cairn over them where they lay. [21] Scott's biographer David Crane describes Cherry-Garrard as "the future interpreter, historian and conscience of the expedition. [115] Edgar Evans's health was deteriorating; a hand injury was failing to heal, he was badly frostbitten, and is thought to have injured his head after several falls on the ice. By 30 December, they had "caught up" with Shackleton's 1908–1909 timetable. Both the North and South poles have always been places of great interest throughout history. [69][71], To ensure that physical fitness was maintained there were frequent games of football in the half-light outside the hut; Scott recorded that "Atkinson is by far the best player, but Hooper, P.O. "[60], The aim of the first season's depot-laying was to place a series of depots on the Barrier from its edge—Safety Camp—down to 80°S, for use on the polar journey which would begin the following spring. The storm also carried away the tent upon which their survival would depend during their return journey, but fortunately this was recovered, half a mile away. The Pole. There was still no hint from Scott as to who would be in the final polar party. With Atkinson thus occupied, an alternative arrangement to pick up Scott was necessary. Photographer Herbert Ponting in his makeshift darkroom. We may find ourselves in safety at the next depot, but there is a horrid element of doubt. [40], Scott defined the objects of the expedition in his initial public appeal: "The main objective of this expedition is to reach the South Pole, and to secure for The British Empire the honour of this achievement. [124] Scott's last diary entry, dated 29 March 1912, the presumed date of their deaths, ends with these words: Every day we have been ready to start for our depot 11 miles away, but outside the door of the tent it remains a scene of whirling drift. It was led by Robert Falcon Scott and had various scientific and geographical objectives. [59] Scott recorded the event calmly in his journal. Ben and Tarka will cover 1800 miles starting from Scott's Terra Nova Hut at the edge of Antarctica to the South Pole and back to the coast again. Last entry. The Discovery expedition had made a significant contribution to Antarctic scientific and geographical knowledge, but in terms of penetration southward had reached only 82° 17' and had not traversed the Great Ice Barrier. Only one of these groups would carry on to the pole; the supporting groups would be sent back at specified latitudes. The Terra Nova Expedition, officially the British Antarctic Expedition, was an expedition to Antarctica which took place between 1910 and 1913. The expedition's team of scientists carried out a comprehensive scientific programme, while other parties explored Victoria Land and the Western Mountains. [126] Scott placed greater emphasis on the former journey than on the latter: "Whilst the object of your third journey is important, that of the second is vital". The ponies were brought to haul sledges but proved ill-suited to the Antarctic climate and terrain. [27] Oates would be in charge of the ponies, but as he could not join the expedition until May 1910, Scott instructed Meares, who knew nothing of horses, to buy them—with unfortunate consequences for their quality and performance. "[120] The low temperatures were accompanied by an absence of wind, something Scott had expected to assist them on their northern journey. As a member of the shore party in early 1911, Ponting helped set up the Terra Nova Expedition’s Antarctic winter camp at Cape Evans, Ross Island. Most of them died along the way. [49] On 10 December, Terra Nova met the southern pack ice and was halted, remaining for 20 days before breaking clear and continuing southward. [101], Scott's initial plan was that the dogs would return to base at this stage. Last entry. Ernest Shackleton had come within 100 miles of the pole the previous year, and Norwegian explorer Roald Amundsen also had his sights set on reaching it first. We shall stick it out to the end, but we are getting weaker, of course, and the end cannot be far. [144], When Cherry-Garrard returned from One Ton Depot without Scott's party, anxieties rose. The final five men pushed southward. Though dismayed by this development, Scott decided to proceed as planned and begin laying supply depots farther and farther into the interior of the continent in preparation for the push to the pole. [160] The Terra Nova returned to England with over 2,100 plants, animals, and fossils, over 400 of which were new to science. Only two of the eight ponies on the depot-laying mission made it back. An Adélie penguin defends its nest from photographer Herbert Ponting at Cape Royds, Ross Island. The Race – South Pole Route Map. Ponting's photos show many members of the 65-strong support party for the Terra Nova expedition from June 1910 to February 1912. Reinforced from bow to stern with seven feet of oak to protect against the Antarctic ice pack, she sailed from Cardiff Dockson 15 June 1910 under overall command of Captain Scott. Captain Robert Falcon Scott had already been to Antarctica prior to his ill-fated Terra Nova expedition (1910-13). [46] In his diary he wrote that Amundsen had a fair chance of success, and perhaps deserved his luck if he got through. Gear, clothes, and sleeping bags were constantly iced up; on 5 July, the temperature fell below −77 °F (−61 °C)—"109 degrees of frost—as cold as anyone would want to endure in darkness and iced up clothes", wrote Cherry-Garrard. Arriving off Ross Island on 4 January 1911, Terra Nova scouted for possible landing sites around Cape Crozier at the eastern point of the island,[51] before proceeding to McMurdo Sound to its west, where both Discovery and Nimrod had previously landed. [55] A prefabricated accommodation hut measuring 50 by 25 feet (15.2 m × 7.6 m) was erected and made habitable by 18 January. By no means, however, was training required. [161][162] Before the expedition, glaciers had only been studied in Europe. [98][99], The motor party, consisting of Lieutenant Evans, Day, Lashly and Hooper, started from Cape Evans on 24 October, with two motor sledges, their objective being to haul loads to latitude 80° 30' S and wait there for the others. He commanded the Government-funded Discovery expedition … The alternative to waiting was moving southwards for another four days. The fact that Meares had turned back from the polar march much later than originally planned meant that he did not return to Cape Evans until 5 January. Terra Nova returned from New Zealand on 4 January 1912, and transferred the party to the vicinity of Evans Cove, a location approximately 250 miles (400 km) south of Cape Adare and 200 miles (320 km) northwest of Cape Evans. A secondary purpose was to experiment with food rations and equipment in advance of the coming summer's polar journey. Upon reaching the Beardmore Glacier, 4 men would be sent back to the base with the dogs and the ponies would be killed for food. Just two days after the Terra Nova Expedition left New Zealand in November 1910, a … The journey's scientific purpose was to secure emperor penguin eggs from the rookery near Cape Crozier at an early embryo stage, so that "particular points in the development of the bird could be worked out". Scott was not there. Geological specimens from both Western Mountains expeditions were retrieved by Terra Nova in January 1913. On 15 November, they raised a cairn near to where they believed he had died. ... become the first person to reach the South Pole. [78], On 17 April 1912 a party under Edward Atkinson, in command at Cape Evans during the absence of the polar party, went to relieve Campbell's party, but were beaten back by the weather. After several failed attempts to land his party on the King Edward VII Land shore, Campbell exercised his option to sail to Victoria Land. In the standard edition of his book, Cherry omitted any mention of Scott's request to be picked up at 82° or 82°30' on 1 March. Three members of the Norwegian expedition, including Amundsen, were invited on board Terra Nova for lunch, and other shipboard visits were exchanged. In his 1922 book The Worst Journey, Cherry-Garrard recalled the controversial verbal orders given by Atkinson. By 1 November, both motor sledges had failed after little more than 50 miles (80 km) of travel, so the party man-hauled 740 pounds (336 kg) of supplies for the remaining 150 miles (240 km) reaching their assigned latitude two weeks later. [46] Terra Nova, heavily overladen, finally left Port Chalmers on 29 November. The Terra Nova expedition of 1911 - 1912 is best known for the courageous but ultimately ill fated attempt to race to the South Pole. With supplies for themselves and the dogs for 24 days, they had about eight days' time before having to return to Hut Point. The objective of this journey was geological exploration of the coastal area west of McMurdo Sound, in a region between the McMurdo Dry Valleys and the Koettlitz Glacier. [1] The Discovery expedition had made a significant contribution to Antarctic scientific and geographical knowledge, but in terms of penetration southward had reached only 82° 17' and had not traversed the Great Ice Barrier. Scott and his exploration ship Terra Nova. Scott and his four-person crew reached the South Pole in 1912, but all five died on the return journey to their expedition base, the Terra Nova hut on Cape Evans. Welsh Coal Geologist Frank Debenham grinds stone samples. Scott wrote that Oates' last words were "I am just going outside and may be some time".[123]. A desperate race to conquer the South Pole. I wonder if we can do it. Disregarding Meares, who was "not available for work", the most qualified person available to meet Scott's party was the physicist Wright, an experienced traveller and navigator, but the chief scientist Simpson insisted Wright's scientific work be given priority. The delay, which Scott attributed to "sheer bad luck", had consumed 6.1 long tons (6,200 kg) of coal.[50]. No-one is to blame and I hope no attempt will be made to suggest that we had lacked support. [35] There were further plans to explore King Edward VII Land, a venture described by Campbell, who was to lead it, as "the thing of the whole expedition",[43] and Victoria Land. South Pole Expedition – Capt. In a brief spell of good weather, Scott ordered a half-day's rest, allowing Wilson to "geologise"; 30 pounds (14 kg) of fossil-bearing samples were added to the sledges. "[122] In a farewell letter to Sir Edgar Speyer, dated March 16, Scott wondered whether he had overshot the meeting point and fought the growing suspicion that he had in fact been abandoned by the dog teams: "We very nearly came through, and it's a pity to have missed it, but lately I have felt that we have overshot our mark. Well, it is something to have got here" Scott still hoped to race Amundsen to the telegraph cablehead in Australia: "Now for a desperate struggle to get the news through first. [113], After confirming their position and planting their flag, Scott's party turned homewards. The party waited until 5 February before trekking southward, and were rescued from the ice when they were finally spotted from the ship on 18 February. After diaries, personal effects and records had been collected, the tent was collapsed over the bodies and a cairn of snow erected, topped by a cross fashioned from Gran's skis. After first being turned down by Scott, he allowed his contribution to stand, which impressed Scott sufficiently for him to reverse his decision. [23] On the advice of Fridtjof Nansen, Scott recruited a young Norwegian ski expert, Tryggve Gran. The five men crossed the polar plateau with relative ease, but began to struggle as they ascended the Beardmore Glacier. On the way back to camp, they stumbled upon a surprise — Roald Amundsen’s expedition had arrived and was camped in the Bay of Whales. Later, as the surviving ponies were crossing the sea ice near Hut Point, the ice broke up. [147] On 12 November the party found the tent containing the frozen bodies of Scott, Wilson and Bowers, 11 miles (18 km) south of One Ton Depot. [159], The scientific contributions of the expedition were long overshadowed by the deaths of Scott and his party. [2][a], In 1909, Scott received news that Ernest Shackleton's Nimrod expedition had narrowly failed to reach the Pole. Yes, but under very different circumstances from those expected ... Great God! [3] Scott had claimed the McMurdo Sound area as his own "field of work",[4] and Shackleton's use of the area as a base was in breach of an undertaking he gave Scott. [6], As he made his preparations for a further expedition, Scott was aware of other impending polar ventures. [77] Here they suffered severe privations—frostbite, hunger, and dysentery, with extreme winds and low temperatures, and the discomfort of a blubber stove in confined quarters. This was a continuation of the work carried out in the earlier journey, this time concentrating on Granite Harbour region approximately 50 miles (80 km) north of Butter Point. Scott called the Winter Journey "a very wonderful performance",[93] and was highly satisfied with the experiments in rations and equipment: "We are as near perfection as experience can direct. Atkinson read the relevant portions of Scott's diaries, and the nature of the disaster was revealed. [35], Terra Nova sailed from Cardiff, Wales, on 15 June 1910. The party searched further south for Oates's body, but found only his sleeping bag. [44] Scott, detained by expedition business, sailed later on a faster passenger liner and joined the ship in South Africa. On 10 March, in worsening weather, with his own supplies dwindling, Cherry-Garrard turned for home. Scott, Wilson and Bowers struggled on to a point 11 miles (18 km) south of One Ton Depot, but were halted on 20 March, by a fierce blizzard. On 22 December, at latitude 85° 20' S, Scott sent back Atkinson, Cherry-Garrard, Wright and Keohane. The so-called Terra Nova expedition found that they had been beaten to the pole by a Norwegian team by 33 days, and on their return journey Scott and his four fellow explorers died. He had, like Oates, contributed £1,000 to funds. On March 20, just 11 miles from the largest supply depot, they were immobilized by a ferocious blizzard. On the Barrier stage of the homeward march, Scott reached the 82° 30' S meeting point for the dog teams, three days ahead of schedule, noting in his diary for 27 February 1912: "We are naturally always discussing possibility of meeting dogs, where and when, etc. Members of the party would turn back at specified latitudes, leaving a final group of five to reach the pole. To mark the 100th anniversary of Scott reaching the South Pole, a new exhibition opened on 20th Jan at the Museum. Roald Amundsen. Dog handler Cecil Meares at the piano in the hut. [18] Wilson was Scott's closest confidant among the party; on the Discovery Expedition he had accompanied Scott on the Farthest South march to 80°S. British explorer Robert Falcon Scott reached the South Pole during his ill-fated Terra Nova Expedition on 17 January 1912. The ponies, who had performed much worse than expected, began weakening and dying. [152] For many years the image of Scott as a tragic hero, beyond reproach, remained almost unchallenged, for although there were rifts among some who were close to the expedition, including relatives of those who died, this disharmony was not public. [14] Ex-Royal Navy officer Victor Campbell, known as "The Wicked Mate", was one of the few who had skills in skiing, and was chosen to lead the party that would explore King Edward VII Land. [98] Atkinson diverted his attention to the rescue of Evans, whom he brought to Hut Point, barely alive, on 22 February. Geologist Thomas Griffith Taylor and meteorologist Charles Wright look out towards the Terra Nova from inside an ice grotto. 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