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Welcome to a truly amazing story of Antarctic survival in 1912.

At Cape Evans, Scott's shore party was starting their second winter
knowing
Scott and the Pole Party had perished .

However, they hoped that Campbell's Northern Party, abandoned 230 miles North of them,
 could find some way of surviving the coming Antarctic winter.

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The  synopsis

Six members Northern Party had been together and alone since 12 February 1911, except for those five days in January 1912 spent on the Terra Nova travelling from Cape Adare and to Evans Cove in Terra Nova Bay.  Their intentions were to stay six weeks to explore that part of Victoria Land.  Ten weeks’ rations and equipment were left in a depot at a place they were to later name Hell's Gate.

The Terra Nova planned to return in a few weeks to pick them up, however ice conditions prevented this.  Stranded, here at Hell’s Gate, they prepared for a cold and very unpleasant winter. 

Rescue, Campbell knew would not come.  They must survive with only the clothes they stood up in, a few weeks’ rations, and a little seal meat.  Moving across to Inexpressible Island, they found a snowdrift and excavated a 9 by 12 foot snow cave.  They crawled into their home ready to face the coming cruel Antarctic winter.  Survival was the immediate aim.  Rescue would have to wait until next spring.  Then in October, with day light just returning, they would need to pack their sledges and begin man hauling 230-miles across the sea ice to the Main Expedition Base at Cape Evans.

The place names, Hell’s Gate and Inexpressible Island gives some inkling of the suffering and misery. 


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  • Don Webster