Wednesday, December 22, 2010

20 December, 1911

Camp 42. 6500 feet, about.

Just got off our best half march -- 10 miles, 1150 yards, over 2 miles. With an afternoon to follow we should do very well today; the wind has been coming up the valley. Turning my journal seems to have brought luck. I write on one side of the pages, then turn the whole book around and write on the black sides.

Pulling the sledges in crampons is no difficulty at all. At lunch, Wilson and Bowers walked back 2 miles or so to try to find Bower's broken sledgemeter, without result. During their absence a fog spread about us, carried up the valleys by an easterly wind. We started the afternoon march in this fog very unpleasantly, but later it gradually drifted, and tonight it is very fine and warm.

I have just told off the people to return tomorrow night: Atkinson, Wright, Cherry-Garrard, and Keohane. All are disappointed — poor Wright rather bitterly, I fear. It suspect it has something to do with picking Evans ahead of him. But every time I looked back at his team, I saw Evans pulling hard. Wright won't talk to me. I dreaded this necessity of choosing — nothing could be more heartrending. I calculated our programme to start from 85 degrees 10 minutes with 12 units of food (a unit equalling a week's supplies for four men), and eight men. We ought to be in this position tomorrow night, less one day's food. After all our harassing trouble one cannot be satisfied with such a prospect.

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