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"POLAR EXPLORATION, Otago Witness, Issue 2802, 27 November 1907
THE SHACKLETON EXPEDITION. KL?£ROD ARRIVES AT LYTTELTON. MEMBERS OF THE PARTY INTERVIEWED. CHRISTCHURCH, November 24. The arrival of the Nimrod yesterday caused considerable excitement in Christchurch and the district round about, and the ship was thronged with visitors throughout the whole of to-day. Though capable of steaming only 6even knots per day, the Nimrod put up a fairly good record on her passage to Lyttelton. On; at least 40 out of the 108 days taken to cover the distance she ete&med and sailed 150 knots and over per day. On two days — October 23 and November 19— she put up her record, covering 193 knots en each day. Only on comparatively few days did she fail to do 100 knots in the 24 hours. CAPTAIN ENGLAND" S NARRATIVE. Captain England was a busy, übiquitous skipper on Saturday evening, and one was loth to draw upon his generous fund of patience and forbearance' to the extent of compelling him to 6tand and deliver the narrative of the Nimrod's leisurely journey half round the globe. Accordingly he was respited until yesterday morning, when he was discovered scurrying across the quarterdeck of his hotel in the city. Mr Mackintosh (the second officer) and Mr Dunlop (the chief engineer) later appeared on the scene, smiling delightfully at the prospect of a spell on shore after having been cribbed, cabined, and confined upon the Nimrod for four months. From the captain's narrative it appeared that the Nimrod left Torquay on August 7, covering the 2300 miles to St. Vincent | at an average speed of 5.6 knots and arriving on the 23rd, after a passage of 17 daye. "We only staved there lopg enough to coal and get a" little fresh provisions. We arrived at Capetown on October 3, covering the 5400 miles at an average of 5.8 knots. We coaled and obtained fresh provisions there, and sailed for Lyttelton on October 5. We should have called at Sydney had time permitted, but it would not. We covered the 7319 miles to Lyttelton at an average speed of 6.2 knots per hour. We sighted the Snares on the 20th of this month, and Nugget Point next day, but were too far off to signal. We passed Cepe Sa-unders that night, and we- signalled Akaroa 10 miles off at 10 o'clock on Saturday morning. The voyage commenced -under unfavourable weather conditions, and generally we experienced adverse winds down to the Gape, but thence the winds were favourable. Then before sighting the Snares we had a strong favouring gale. On Friday night, however, we got it dead ahead when off the Ninety-mile Beach, and as we could make no progress against it we eimply stood by, and that is the reason why we were so far off Akaroa. We were under sail alone for 11 clays and under steam alone for two or three daye. The Nimrod has a tremendous motion, but she i« a good sea boat. Of course, she was not in proper trim coming out, but will be when 6he leaves for the Antarctic." SCIENTIFIC WORK. We stopped occasionally on the passage to obtain specimens, and carried out deeppea dredging operations throughout. We secured a large number of specimens, and these will be sent Home for classification to ascertain if anything new has been discovered. Magnetic survey work was also carried out all the way wherever possible, but owing to the bad weather after leaving Capetown not so much of this kind of investigation has been performed during the latter part of the voyage ac during the earlier stages. Current bottles, with the usual forms enclosed, were thrown overboard on an average of two per week, and these, if recovered, will be returned to the Hydrographical Department of the British Admiralty. The results of the whole of pur scientific work will be sent Home to he put in shape. We »re to continue these observations on the way down to the ice to land the party and in the return voyage also. Having landed the scientists, the Nimrod is to engage in a long series of magnetic surveys along the great trade routes of the Indian Ocean from Australia to the Mozambique Channel and away up to Aden. It is hoped, also, that it will be possible to conduct soundings in the vicinity of Wilkes Land. For such work the vessel is splendidly equipped, as the Admiralty has lent a number of special instruments, including a. 6ounding machine capable of sounding to the enormous depth of 6000 fathoms. Every 500 miles it is intended to swing the ship to ascertain the variation of the compass. The Nimrod will winter in the India-n Ocean during a period of Eve or six months. THE PARTY. '"The landing party," Captain England pursued, " will include Mr Shackleton (as leader). Professor David (Sydney University), Dr M'Kay, Sir Philip Brocklehuwt, Mr Murray, and totals 12 in al'.. All of these are specialists in some department or other. Mr Joyce, who was on the Discovery, is an all-round man, and is making the man and dog sledge harness while coming out in the Runic. We expect to take about two months in landing the party, building the hut, etc, and making everything shipshane, and should get back to Lyttelton about April, 1908. We then set out for tho Indian Ocean and pick up the shore party. In April, 1909, the camp will be 700 miles from the Pole, and parties of three (leaving three at the base, will ra/diate thence to the south, east, «nd west. " Ths expedition must not be accepted purely as a dash for the Pole, That, of course, is one of the objects, but the work is also to cover scientific exploration of a comprehensive character. We hope the conquest of the Pole will include part of the success, but not all of it. Mr Shackleton ia to lead the south-going party. "We bav'e special materials for clothing. The day of furs, except for the hands and feet, is gone. This aame class of woollen clothing was used with distinct ■ucceas on the Discovery and Morning. THE MOTOR CAR. "The motor car is a novelty in Polar exploration work, but Manohurian ponies were used by the Fiala- expedition in Franz Josef Land. Our motor car has
different patterns of wheels to 6uit the varying classes of travelling. When soft snow is reached, the front wheels will be removed and replaced by runners, whi;h will beat down a surface for the drivi lg wheels to run upon. In designing the car the experience and suggestions of these taking part in previous explorations have been incorporated to provide suitable devices. The petrol supplies have been specially tested for freezing, and special lubricating oil will be furnished. The car, which is coming out in the Runic, wjll only be used for haulage purposes to t<iw the sledges attached to the side of the err. FOOD SUPPLIES. Fodder for the ponies has been suppli ;d in the form of compressed hay and arriy rations. The latter are contained in omill lib tins, and consist of beef, carrots, milk, sugar, and currants, each ration, with waisr added, making up sib. These rations .ire a comparatively new idea, but have bfcen used with the utmost success. Vegetables for the expedition, prepared in the e.ime manner, are also being sent. These ere also quite a new thing on Polar expeditions and should prove one of the greyest boons of all in the dietary arrangements. The ponies have not, of course, as yet become used to the rations, but I expect they will take to them kindly enough down among the ice. THE DOGS. We are expecting 12 Esquimaux dogs to be sent up to us by Mr Traill, from Stewart Island. Speaking of the dogs, it is marvellous to note how a change from cne hemisphere to another affects them. After rossing the equator, and at a time when the dogs from the Northern Hemisphere would be putting on their winter coats, those being brought south seem to pause in the operation, and finelly retain their summer coats until the southern winter lias '"'general observations. After leaving Lyttelton we make no calls anywhere until making the ice.. "The Nimrod," Captain England went on, " was handed over- to us only s x weeks before leaving. She had neither mast 6 nor spars, and was reeking with oil and blubber. You could hardly conceive the change that was wrought in that short space of time. At present the Nimrod draws 13ft of water, but when loaded for tho ice she will draw 17ft. The but that we are to erect will be heated with oil, but the cooking will be done by riieans of a range, burning coal and wood. I am extremely pleased to learn that Mr J. J. Kinsey has consented to act as our representative in New Zealand. He did everything he possibly could for us in connection with the Morning (and that was a very great deal), and his generous assistance I shall never forget. We purpose taking down a few live sheep and killing 'ihem when it is cold enough, and, of course, the carcases will then keep indefinitely. >it present we have an ice-housa on the Nimrod, which has been of great convenience to us coming out, but as we shall not have any room for it it will be left ashore at Lyttelton. "Most of the provisions for the landing party have been specially prepared and brought out from Home, but the bulk of the ship's provisions will be taken on b-r.ard at Lyttelton. Unfortunately, on the .Nimrod there is not a large amount of acoo/nmodation, as you may well imagine from her size— oii-y' 227 tons register. "How are we going to accommodate the extra people when they come? Oh! v»c-H, I suppose we shall push them in somewhere. Certain alterations will be mala to cope with this difficulty, but no structural changes of any extent will be attempted. The vessel was chosen for ror stability and general staunchness, and in these "respects is all that could possibly be desired. We shall be taking down .a ton and a-half of carbide for the acetylene gas plant, which is to light the hut, and in every way this department will be very much better equipped than the Discovery's was. The hut is 33ft long, 19ft wide, and Bft high, with double walls of yellow pine, the four inch space between being filled with granulated cork. After the landing party has settled down, the three sub-divisions will push out in their respective directions, establishing depots. Mr Shackleton's party will establish food depots every 100 miles, and the location of these will be- distinguished by black flags flying from bsmboo poles set in cairns and visible for about three miles. After having got all his depots established, it is anticipated that Mr Shackleton will set out on his big journey in October, 1903. " Among other pleasing features attending our arrival here last night was the offer extended on behalf of the harbour board, offering us all the concessions made to the Discovery and Morning during their stays here. What these concessions mean only those connected with the Discovery and Morning can fully appreciate. It is sufficient to say that the board could not pos- , sibly do any more. It was most kind of them, and 'I appreciate very deeply the generous spirit prompting the offer. The Bluff Harbour Board has aNo intimated that it will be pleased to extend the hospitality of the' port free of charge should wo find it convenient to put in there. The Railway Department has also been very considerate to us already. '" It Is with a distinct feeling of gladness that I return to Lyttelton, as I have a very deep affection for your country. I have never found a place which I liked better." ! MR SHAOKLETONS MOVEMENTS. In the course of conversation, Mr Reid [ (manager of tho expedition) ttated that i i Mr Shaokleton, who is coming by the e.-s. India, is due to arrive at Fremantle on the 271h insfc.. and at Adelaide on December 1. He comes overland to Melbourne lecturing on December 3 to a large assem- | blage, Lord Xorthcote being one of thoae to be present. In Sydney Mr Shaokleton is to deliver another lecture, when Sir Harry Raweon will preside. He sails in the Maheno on the 7th and is due to arrive in Christchurch on the 12 prox. "So far as I know," Mr Reid said, "it rests entirely with the people of Christchurch. whether Mr Shaekleton will lecture here or not. He is extremely interested in his work, and has always been willing, to afford the public a maximum of information. Hie lectures in Sydney and Melbourne have been arranged at the urgent request of the people there. I received a cablegram from Sir Shaokleton at Colombo approving of my arrangements thus far, and subject to | further instructions I expect to leave on mr return to England in January next." The ship's Burgeon 1b Dr Mitchell, M.8., a genial young Canadian, who took his 1 degree at Toronto University. "The health
of the crew of the ship is my first considera- ' tion," he smilingly observed, when questioned by the reporter as to the part he I was taking in the expedition, " but I take any other work that comes along in connection with the working of the ship." As to the difficulties which as surgeon of I an expeditionary ship may encounter Dr i Mitchell was not very communicative. The prevention of scurvy wa3 of prime importance, and secondly, strange though it may be, the jolly tar has to be guarded against melancholia. The latter ailment is, of course, a very minor matter, but it is not uncommon when men have to endure the long and seeming-ly interminable winter nights of the Aretio and Antartic. To 1 dispel melancholia no evil tasting physio ; will be prescribed. "We liave a grama1 phone and concerts will be arranged, and the men encouraged to entertain themselves in every possible way. We have no piano aboard, but the gift of one, Dr , Michell added, " would be very acceptable." ! As to scurvy, the latest theory advanced , by medical authorities v.as that it was due ' to ptomaine poisoning. Previous expedi- | tions held taken tremendous quantities of ' tinned foods, and it was not surprising that ■ scurvy had given trouble. "On this expedi- ! tion wo have a special line of dried vege- ' tables." Dr Michell explained. "They are commonly known as desicated vegetables. , When you add water you almost get the | original vegetable back. It practically % gives ' you the green vegetable. I think that this will have a good effect in preventing scurvy. . as we have all kinds of vegetables treatea in this manner — potatoes, carrots, onions, parsnips, etc. In fact, everything possible has been done to prevent an outbreak of the disease." Dr Michell was quite enthusiastic about the little Nimrod. " She is a splendid sea boat, very seaworthy in every i way, though a bit lively at times. I had a splendid time on the way out, and enjoyed the long voyage very much. I don't think we carried away a single block at all." Dr Michell stated that he was quite acclimatised to the cold induced by snow and ice. " I have -been in it all my life in Ontario," he said, " and I don't ' 6 up pose it will be much worse in the | Antarctic." In common with many of j his profession, he is much interested in natural history, and he looks forward to , gleaning some useful additions to his j acquaintance with this most fascinating of | studies during his brief stay on the ice with the " landing party, and subsequently during the surveying cruise of the Nimrod. THE ZOOLOGIST. Dr Mackay, M.8., who is detached to the expedition as zoologist, is a mem- | ber of the landing party. He has a special interest in the birds and mammals of the Antarctic regions. '"There are several • varieties of mammals and birds of the far south which are not too well known, and have not been properly worked out from a zoological standpoint," he stated, in the course of an interview, " and we shall endeavour to get specimens of seals and j other denizens of that region to" take back with us." He proceeded to 6 ay that his instructions were to collect specimens of everything he possibly could that had zoological interest, and not to try to select at all. "I think," he said, "we will bet able to get as many as the ship will | carry. The difficulty will be to get storage ' room for the specimens. We anticipate : plenty of interesting developments in regard to zoology. We may find some new specimens, but I don't think it ia likely. Some of the Antarctic products are extremely valuable. - For instance, Emperor penguin eggs are "worth £80 each at Home, and the first ever seen there were brought by Captain Scott's expedition. We must not, however, make the mistake so often made by inexperienced naturalists, of discriminating in our collection. We are out to get everything we can. sight which has any zoological interest. Our collection may be rich in Antarctic birds and seals, but, as far as has yet been ascertained, there are no land mammals to be found, and I have no expectation that our search will reveal : their presence." | Dr Mackay will also have charge of the Manc-hurian ponies. These hardy animals, i he explained, had been brought from Man- . churia and Siberia, and were drawn liom , what was considered about the coldest part , of the world. "The thing that spoiled I Captain Scott's dash for the pole vas, i he said, " tho breakdown of his dogs ; so , we are trying what ponies can do this time. I have no practical experience of such expeditions, but I argue that if men can stand the extreme Antarctic cold, these Manchurian ponies will not be found wanting. We expect to land on the ice noxt ■ January or February, and the hut which we have on board will be built. A landing party of from 12 to 15 persons, as Lieutenant Sbackleton decides, will occupy the hut £o-» the winter, and tho Nimrod will go on >ther work. The winter will be f.pont in preparation for three different expeditions— one making its objective tho South Pole, and the two others working in different directions on survey work (one going east and the other west). The main body of the expedition will, of course, go for the Pole." THE BIOLOGIST. A self-conlair.ed, introspective, and mo-t reserved scientist is Mr J. Murray, biologHt of the expedition. Mr Murray hails " fiae- Glescao,' 1 and in his unwillingness to talk about himself demonstrates the typical attributes of his race. "My duties will include the investigation and examination of marine life and any of the mosses we , may find on land," he said. " No, I have never , done any Polar work before, and it will be all now to me. I cannot tell you whether or not we shall break any new ground. I At this distance it all looks like groping in the dark. Of course, we shall take the facts ascertained by previous expeditions j as our starting point and our baseß, but it < is impoasib'e to say if we shall be able to ' carry matter 3 much further. _We are taking the ordinary appliances — just that, and nothing special." Mr Murray became obstinately reticent when the subject of his personal achievements in the realm of science were broached. He admitted (and then only under the most pertinacious crossexamination) that for the last five years he ; ' had been engaged upon a lake survey of Scotland under Sir John Murray, and then esca-ped with all the precipitation and cvi- . deuces of relief one would look "to discover in a frightened bird suddenly ideased froiii the fowler's sflaie. THE CHIEF ENGINEER. < llr 11. J. L. Dunlop (the chief engineer) . on first acquaintance appeared to be a typica!, somewhat taciturn, .Scottish engi- ' ; neer. Ho had comparatively httlo to C 3.y ' regarding the way the machinery had ; behaved. No breakdowns of any cons.' j auenca had occurred, ana the Nimroae I :
engines had generally come up to what was expected from them. The facts that the Nimrod has only one boiler, and that she will be, to the best of Mr Dunlop's knowledge, the first ship to attempt a voyage to the Antarctic with only one boiler and the four-bladed propeller, were commented upon by the chief engineer. With the exception of 11 or 12 day 6, the Nimrod steamed the whole distance from London to Lyttelton, and Mr Dunlop's summing up" of the whole matter was that the ship and her machinery had behaved very well. As an item of interest, he mentioned that a distilling plant, capable of distilling 1000 gallons of fresh water from sea water, is carried. A MORNING VETERAN. One of the mo«t popular members of the Nimrod contingent is Mr A. Cheetham, who, as bosun of the Morning, found high favour with hosts of admiring Antipodean i friends during the stay of his former vessel iin New Zealand waters. Mr Cheetham, I widely smiling and comprehensively genial as ever, comes back as third mate of the ! Nimrod, and on Saturday he was showered ' with congratulations upon his substantial I promotion to so responsible a post. "Well, I I'm back again," he announced, with 1 breezy Yorkshire heartiness, " and it don't seem so long, neither. Well, after we . got back in the old Morning they gave us I a royal time at Hull, where we mostly belong. I put in my four months' naval reserve training, and then went bosun on . the Montebello, running in the passenger trade to Christiania. They tried hard to get the Morning men for the Nimrod, but they were scattered so, and Bilsby (" chips ") and I were the only ones who could get away. So far as I know, the Morning men are all doing well. The i bosun's male was killed at Naples in the Übano. We don't carry.so many men on the Nimrod as the Morning did. We have only six before the mast, whereas there were 12 on the Morning. What made me t*okle it again? Well, for one thing it is a fine exciting trip (you never know what is coming next). I got this stripe, 1 and the wages are good, and then Lieu- | tenant Shackleton and Captain England 1 are coming — that's why. J. Patten, a Lyttelton boy, who came down with the , Morning, is joining the Nimrod. All our j provisions are in double cases, and in this I and other respects this is one of the most perfectly-equipped expeditions that has left England. We have provisions for threo years. We were all measured for our special Antarctic clothing before leaving, but we haven't seen it yet It will be served out after leaving Lyttelton on New I Year's Day. The Nimrod belongs to the Royal Clyde Yacht Club. We have got the hut and sled gee down in the hold. The shore party occupying it will sleep in hammocks. We have got some really fine talent on board. Mr Murray (the biologist) and Victor Berry are the artiste. We have several poets, and, of course, & , number of singers. A large gramaphone I is the only musical instrument of any consequence that we have on board. We have had regular concerts on the way out, and church every Sunday conducted by Captain England. We have none of the Dis- | covery's gear with us, everything being new. The gear used by the Discovery was j distributed among various musemus on , account of ite historical interest and j value. Through the kindness of the good friends. I made here before I have been kept posted up in New Zealand affairs, and I feel I am coming back to one of my homes -again. A DISASTROUS TREASURE-HUNT. Included with the Nimrod 1 s company are men who have participated in stirring adventures in all parts of the world. One of these seamen (Victor Berry) took part in one in those mest romantio of ail treasure regions, the Cocos Islands, where the notorious Captain Kidd, away back in the spacious buccaneering days, was supposed to have buried bullion, plate, and jewels aggregating £30,000,000 in value. 1 "It was in 1904," Seaman Berry mused I reflectively, " that we left London in the steam yacht Cavalier, under the command 1 of Captain Shepherd, all of us more than ; mildly excited at the adventure's prospect I and full of high hopes that before long I we should be digging up boat-loads of goW i and silver. From the first we seemed doomed |to encounter the worst. No sooner had we i set out than we ran into bad weather. The night before we got to Rio we broke .down, and crawled in a lame duck. We stayed there to carry out repairs for 10 days, and then pushed on to Monte Video. While there the Pampero came down, and I the Cavalier dragged anchor, nearly piling us up. Still hopeful that something better would come our way, we set out for Punta. Arenas. Passing through the Straits of ; Magellan we lost an anchor and 100 fathoms of chain. At Chiquita we spent an exciting night, with a roaring, tearing gale raging all the time. One day out of the straits and along the South American roast we encountered a 'norther,' and thence on we did not get a sight of the sun for five days. When the storm struck us we had all canvas set, and had to cut it away. There it lay, flapping: and roaring on the decks while we ran before the gale. We could get no cooked food, and a little coffee was about the best we could obtain in that line. On the fifth day we sighted some unknown land, which ""proved afterwards to be Mocha Island. The administrator of the island entertained the captain at hN residence, while the officers and crew camped ashore. We stayed there 18 days, and after getting coal and stores from the mainland (Chili) and making repairs, we hovo up and hoaded for Coronel. From there wo proceeded to Guayaquil, where Colonel Hammond (a member of the syndicate) joined us. We conveyed him and lih parly to Panama, and made our way back to Guayaquil. After the officers had priven a dinner to the British Consul, we left late at night. On our way towards the Cocos Island the captain was seized with yellow fever at midnight, and died at 4 a.m. next day. We buried him at noon, and (with the chief officer in charge) wo returned to Panama. The unlucky expedition was there abandoned, the crew paid off, and the ship sold to Colonel Hammond. It took us 118 days to reach Panama, and the crew got home in 14 days after being palH off. "How did I come to join the Ximrcd? Well, I was at home, taking things easy at the time, and happened to see an account of the proposed expedition in the pajjere. The idea of it took my fancy, co I went away to the docks and got engaged right away. My father is an old master, of 35 years' standing, and I have followed in his footsteps. I have been at sea 6ince I was 14, and although I am only 24 now, I have been nine times round the world. I was in the North Inland ports of New Zealand
' this time last year on board the Ty& Company's Mimiro." THROUGH SAILORS' EYES. " Two jolly sailors bold" had a longyarn to spin to-day' about the voyage of the Nimrod, anent their joys and sorrows-, and their privileges and grievances. They described with simple delight their departure from London, the royal visit to the Nimrod, and the enthusiastic entertainment and farewell tendered them by th» citizens of Torquay. One specially agreeable function was held on H.M.S. Berwick", where the men of the Nimrod were, through the good offices of Lieutenants Adams, who belongs to the scientific party. "We had a splendid time," they declared with enthusiasm aroused by the recollection. They passed lightly over many incidents of the voyage, so humdrum. to> the sailor and yet so interesting to the landsman. There were only four days of bad weather, they said, and on those occasions the oil bags were put down to prevent the seas breaking 1 aboard. The men appreciated the simple concert entertainments in the saloon, at which the gramophone played an all-important part. THE "ANTARCTIC PETREL." A ship's magazine, whose course through the journalistic ocean is being guided by Captain England, as editor, and Dr Michell, sub-editor, was also a source of much entertainment. " A good many of us contribute just whatever strikes us," «aid one of the sailors, and he afterward* modestly produced some really excellent caricature drawings from the recesses of his " Ditty." Two numbers have alreadybeen issued, and it is hoped that several more will sec the light of day before the Antarctic Petrel wings its way intooblivion. THE VESSEL. The sailors were quite agreed that the Nimrod for her size wa9 a wonderful setgoing boat. In heavy weather she tosied a bit, but nothing but spray and small water came aboard. The man who had most cause to complain was the cook, but his tribulation only excited the laughter of his companions. "He has «■ terrible time, and his work is cut out for him when bad weather is on." THE SAILOR'S LIFE. " Its pretty close down here," a salt remarked, leading the way to the men* quarters, whore there were bunka for s : seamen end three firemen. _ And it wos olose until you got used to it. Tho sa.W went on to say that one of the prinrr • faults of the Nimrod from hii point of vi.-> • was that she was leaky at the sides, with *"• result that whenever she lay over the wa'f came through into the bunks. Thia defe.was not discovered until the ship was c her voyage, so caulking could not be dor>" properly. She would be made tiq-ht. boever, before leaving for the south. There w«* not a case of sickness among the crew* «■> the way out. The Nimrod had impresso.} him as a good seaboat, though at times •!'•" took a lot of water aboard. She ha ■* apparently persistently refuied-to put o a trim navy appearance. " For tho last fortnight," said the mariner, "it has been nothing but paint, paint, paint from morainfr till night, and (despairingly) the doein't look any the better for it. She will g«t • lot more before she leaves here. Th» trouble is the smoke, which pfeta on to th» paint and dirties it before it can. dry." People generally have rather haty idea* as to the payment of the men who engas&, themselves for an expeditionary voyage on the Nimrod. The sailors receive £5 10s ocr month and 10s per month oonduct money. When they get beyond a charmed circle of longitude or latitude described as 60 their pay increases by £1 per month. Everything is found for the men, and they ar» allowed lib tobacco (aoft or hard). 31b eoap, and one dozen boxes of matches ever* month, while the "main brace is spliced" every Saturday. Some of fche men confes* to be teetotallers, but they collect their grog all the same, and hand it over to their mates. At the conclusion of an interesting chat the sailor produced his " ditty box " and exhibited several interestinjr mementoe* which he had already collected in connection with the trip. THE NIMROD' S PREPARATIONS. CHRISTCHURCH, November 25. The Nimrod will go into dock shortly in order that the accumulation of weeds and barnacles on her bottom ' may be removed. Several of the scientists who arrived by the Nimrod on Saturday night will leave for Mount Cook to-morrow morning. The officers and crew of tho Nimroa are taking a brief holiday to-day r preparatory to making a start with the work that lies in front of them before they leave for the south. This morning a. number of visitors, official and otherwise, went aboard the stout little ship and paid their respects to Captain England. Th« visitors included Mr G. Laurenson, M.H.R., and representatives of tho Ha-rbour Board. Work will bo commenced on the Nimroa to-morrow. The first stop will be to discharge tho stores and equipment which form the vessel's cargo. Every article intanded for me in the Antarctic has to bo thoroughly inspected, in order that there may be no unfortunate discoveries at a. later date. When the vessel onco leaves Lyttelton there will be no way of replacing: faulty or damaged stores; and it is therefore of the utmost importance that all the supplies and equipment shall be in good condition. There is at present on board the Nimrod the greater part of tho food and general supplies (on which the landing party will have to subsist for many months), as well as the sledges, the scientific equipment, and a special hut prepared for erection in the Far South. Thw hut, of course in sections, is at present stowed in the hold. After the Nunrod ha« beon emptied she will be docked and thoroughly cleaned. At present 6he has a thick coating of weeds below the water-line, and her general appearance ia somewhat disreputable. Boxes nave to be erected on the deck to accommodate the ponies, at present running on Quail Island. The remaining open space on deck will then be very small.
"POLAR EXPLORATION, Otago Witness, Issue 2802, 27 November 1907
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