Shackleton and Isolde (guest crew)

Difficulties are in the end just things which have to be overcome.’ 

– Ernest Shackleton (1874–1922): The Heart of the Antarctic, S. 189.

The ice floe breaks, the Endurance crew is stuck and Shackleton and his men have to find a new escape out of the ever lasting ice.  On the 9th of April 1916 after months of passing the ice and winter in the Antarctic and the failed endurance expedition, Shackleton and his crew set out with three safety boats northward, to save his 28 men. They landed after a extremely dangerous and adventurous journey to Elephant Island, the northern part of the Antarctic through which masses of water are dragged between the continents, unbelievable currents, winds and temperatures rule that unique part of the world. Shackleton and five of his best companions sit in a safety boat modified into a sailing vessel making their way towards South Georgia 🇬🇸 with provisions lasting for only four weeks – after that they will be landed or sunk – so Shackletons plan. The rest of the crew is left behind on Elephant Island. After 800 miles the small crew in the safety boat named James Caird reach the southern part of South Georgia to call for help at the whaling station. The stormy sea makes a landing on the northern coast impossible, so Shackleton decides after a view days of rest to cross the island by foot. He takes two of his men with him and after 36 hours, a single rope between them and an axe crossing incredible glaciers and high mountains, the small group arrives at the whaling station. All 28 crew members have been rescued. 

Shackleton, an Antarctic expedition discover and a honoured seaman. Selfless, strong-willed and safety-minded. 

‘According to science give me Scott, for fastness and strength give me Amundsen, but when it comes down to a catastrophe and the situation is hopeless than fall on your knees and bag for Shackleton.’

– Edmund Hillary (1919–2008): in Antje Strubel: Ice Story. Shackletons Kampf in der Antarktis 

Course zero nine zero – in Shackletons foot steps: 

We are steering our way towards South Georgia. A tiny island in the middle of the wide Atlantic between South America and South Africa, British oversea territory. 

The sea is mainly calm, the vessel is leaning towards starboard and all sails are set. The wind blows from the southwest and we sail with an average speed of 8,5 knots towards our destination. The cold and wet nights left our feet freezing during the ice watch on the bow. During the misty morning hours half of the crew rolls out of their bunks to be at 0400 on watch. The routine contains ice watch, steering, stay warm and get lost in your thoughts.

After 4 days the spectacular panoramic view of South Georgia’s snow covered mountains appears on the horizon. We are escorted by albatrosses, petrels, dolphins, seals and all of a sudden a loud pfffffff… a gigantic blue whale mother with her calf appears right next to the boat. Myrthe almost falls off the helm with astonishment. 

All the best 

Isolde

2 Responses to “Shackleton and Isolde (guest crew)

  • Charlotte
    3 months ago

    hey Isolde, have lots of fun and enjoy! We are awaiting you on the other side of the ocean!
    greetings from your sister and the whole family

  • Huhuhu Isolde. Gerade in Gedanken bei deinen Abenteuern und dir! Weitreisende Grüße
    Jutta

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