Tuesday, December 28, 2010

28 December, 1911

Camp 50

I start cooking again tomorrow morning. We have had a troublesome day but have completed our 13 miles. My unit pulled away easy this morning and stretched out for two hours—the second unit made heavy weather. I changed with Evans and found the second sledge heavy—could keep up, but the team was not swinging with me as my own team swings. Then I changed P.O. Evans for Lashly. We seemed to get on better, but we then came up over a rise with hard sastrugi. At the top we camped for lunch. What was the difficulty? One theory was that some members of the second party were stale. Another that all was due to the bad stepping and want of swing; another that the sledge pulled heavy.

In the afternoon we exchanged sledges, and at first went off well, but getting into soft snow, we found a terrible drag, the second party coming quite easily with our sledge. So the sledge is the cause of the trouble, and talking it out, I found that all is due to want of care.The runners ran excellently, but the structure has been distorted by bad strapping, bad loading, 7c. The party are not done, and I have told them plainly that they must wrestle with the trouble and get it right for themselves. There is no possible reason they should not get along as easily as we do.

Oh, and the fact that they have been manhauling for weeks longer than we have on shorter rations is no excuse. No excuse at all.

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