Man-hauling a heavily loaded sledge

Notes about cover photo
The photo on this book’s cover shows the severe hardship of man-hauling a heavily loaded sledge, especially on deep soft snow.

Imagine doing this for mile after mile in freezing conditions, on limited food.

Other than the sheer physical strain of doing this, one thing to be aware of is that even in Antarctica, physical exertion like this causes sweat, and as soon as the men would stop, the sweat would freeze on their bodies. Today in the comfort of our homes, one can only envision the degree of discomfort that would cause.

Scott’s Terra Nova Expedition: 1911

The photo is from Scott’s Terra Nova Expedition and was taken on December 13, 1911. It shows the Bowers sledge party. The men pulling the sledge using harnesses are, from left to right, Apsley Cherry-Garrard, Birdie Bowers, Patrick Keohane and Tom Crean. Pushing on the sledge from the far side is Dr. Edward Wilson. The shape of his head and shoulder is barely visible. Captain Robert Scott is the person whose back is to the camera pushing the sledge. It is believed that this photo was taken by Scott using a string to pull the shutter.

In this photo, they are trying to drag the sledge through deep snow into the tracks created earlier by Lt. Evans’ sledge party. The tracks lead towards the Beardmore Glacier.


The information about this photograph is based on correspondence with David Wilson. The reference is: A Revised Illustrated Catalogue of Captain Scott’s Photographs: 2016, David M. Wilson, (ISBN: 978-0-901021-27-4), published by the Scott Polar Research Institute, © 2016

David Wilson wrote the Foreword to our book.  Please click to read it here.  David Wilson’s book, The Lost Photographs of Captain Scott, is listed in our Recommended Reading section.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This