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November 2014
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Ernest Shackleton’s quest to cross Antarctica could not be completed by the Endurance crew alone.  The Ross Sea party, led by Captain Mackintosh, were tasked with depositing supplies for Shackleton to pick up on the other side of the South Pole.  Without these supply depots, Shackleton and his men would starve to death half-way through their journey.

While the Endurance and her crew were beset in ice, Mackintosh and his men were facing their own life and death struggle.  They were separated from their ship and supplies and stranded on the Ross Ice Shelf.  Knowing that Shackleton’s life was in their hands, they refused to give up, and at great sacrifice to their own health and lives, managed to deposit all of the supplies that Shackleton would have needed, had he been able to begin his cross-continent journey.

Once again, I am overwhelmed by the strength, devotion and sheer determination that these men showed in the face of such a great challenge.  It’s haunting to think that their supply depots, laid at such great cost, were never used, and remain encased in ice and snow to this very day.