The grim grandeur of South Georgia

Stromness from the pass – the point where Shackleton, Crean
and Worsley first saw safety

Stromness Bay

Jeff Cole has kindly sent us some photos taken by ‘Bill‘, a friend of his father-in-law, showing scenes from South Georgia, the South Atlantic island where Sir Ernest Shackleton and his escaping polar explorer crew landed in the original James Caird, a small ship’s boat adapted to make the journey from Elephant Island.

Having landed, a big task still faced them, as they they then had to cross the mountainous island to reach safety at Stromness. If anyone has any doubt about the scale of the task, these stark photos should make it clear. This page describes the geography and history of the place.

Thanks Jeff – there’s something great about these photos. For more photos that Jeff has provided over the last 18 months or so, click here.

For more posts on the James Caird, the replica of the original boat being built by the IBTC for a new expedition to repeat the voyage led by Tim Jarvis, click here.

A whaler’s graveyard, a desolate beach,
and an abandoned whaler

Plaque in commemoration of the Shackleton expedition’s
arrival at the manager’s villa, Stromness

The Wikipedia has much more good stuff on Shackleton, but I think the quote from early in expedition member Apsley Cherry-Garrard’s wonderful book The Worst Journey in the World is perhaps the expedition leader’s best memorial: ‘For a joint scientific and geographical piece of organization, give me Scott; for a Winter Journey, Wilson; for a dash to the Pole and nothing else, Amundsen: and if I am in the devil of a hole and want to get out of it, give me Shackleton every time.’

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