1 "The extreme conditions make Antarctica a habitat in which only the hardiest can survive. Very few species have been recorded on the 2% of the continent that is ice-free. They include about 150 lichens, 30 mosses, some fungi and one liverwort." ( http://library.thinkquest.org/26442/html/life/plant.html : 18/01/2013 )
2 I should mention, for comparison purposes, that the north pole is located pretty much in the middle of a frozen ocean, the Arctic Ocean; to get to it does not require one to go over a stretch of frozen mountains. The ice-cover over the central plane averages 9,000 feet thick.
4 It is interesting to note, that, after service under Ross in the Antarctic, the Erebus and the Terror were outfitted with steam engines and had iron plating added to their hulls. They were then assigned to John Franklin in an Arctic Expedition with a view of discovering the Northwest Passage, which, while it had been charted from both the east and west, had never been entirely navigated. The ships were last seen entering Baffin Bay in August 1845, they were lost together with Franklin and his fellow Arctic explorers.
5 Founded in 1830, The Royal Geographical Society was dedicated to the advancement of geographical sciences; whereas, The Royal Society of London had and has (it is still around) the broader and more general goal of improving natural knowledge; it was established in 1660.
10 After, in the same year, 1909, Curtiss won the world's first airplane race, conducted at Rheims, France and a $5,000 prize. While other pilots slowed down to make turns on a two lap course, Curtiss showed that sharp turns could be banked.
13 A note on the ship, Terra Nova: She was specifically built, in 1884, for services in polar regions as a ship for whaling and sealing. She worked for 10 years in "the annual seal fishery in the Labrador Sea," before being bought, for use in Scott's 1910–1912 expedition. She was a ship of the age with a wooden hull (had to be extremely strong as she plowed through packs of floating ice, and indeed would become stuck for days, and days. She was principally a sailing vessel, a barque with three masts, the first two being square-rigged. So too, she had a funnel, for she possessed an auxiliary coal-fired steam engine. Further along in this work, we will tell more of the Terra Nova.
14 Scott was not on the Terra Nova as she voyaged out to New Zealand. (Teddy Evans was the captain.) Scott travelled separately, together with his wife, leaving baby Peter behind, to join the the Terra Nova at New Zealand. (Huntford, The Last Place On Earth, p. 273)
15 Journal Entry, Scott's Last Exped. Note: much of what follows, and throughout, comes directly out of Scott's journal which commanding naval officers usually keep up, on a daily bases. Scott's Journal is readily available on line.
16 The situation in these waters has been known since when the British, under James Clark Ross, explored the area during the years, 1839-43. So too, it is to be remembered that Scott had picked up personal experiences during his Discovery Expedition of 1901–1904. Scott, also, had the benefit of having read (I should think) of Shackleton's account when he was there during 1907–09 (Nimrod Expedition).
17 Named after Ross' two ships: the Erebus and the Terror when he explored the area during the years 1839-43.
18 Dr. Wilson's Journal.
19 Scott's Journal. It seems that there was a third "motor sledge" which was left aboard and only unloaded on January 8th. In the process it was lost through the ice.
20 Scott's Journal. Scott initially stayed in his cabin aboard the Terra Nova. From another entry, we learn that Scott spent his first night ashore, in a domed tent ("a very comfortable apartment"), on the night of January 8th.
21 Scott, on looking back, thought that "we were terribly incautious in our treatment of this decaying ice." There were a few close calls and the loss of a "motor sledge"; but, in the end, most all of the supplies and equipment was transferred to the shore without serious injury or loss.
22 Oates, the British Army Captain who took charge of the ponies, expressed concern: "such deficiencies as: narrow chests, knocked knees, ... aged" and were the "greatest lot of crocks I have ever seen." (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cecil_Meares) The men, generally, were thoroughly entertained by these ponies. They were to recognise each as individuals. Cherry-Garrard wrote: "... these ponies were an uneven lot. There were the steady workers like Punch and Nobby; there were one or two definitely weak ponies like Blossom, Blücher and Jehu; and there were one or two strong but rather impossible beasts. One of these was soon known as Weary Willie. His outward appearance belied him, for he looked like a pony. A brief acquaintance soon convinced me that he was without doubt a cross between a pig and a mule."
24 The camp ("the hut") at Cape Evans was built to house up to 33 men. This is where Scott and his men stayed before their trip to the South Pole commenced in November, 1911 (the beginning of the summer in the Antarctic). It has been preserved and can be seen today.
25 Atkinson and Crean (left at Safety Camp, see Map); E. Evans, Forde and Keohane (returned with the weaker ponies on Feb. 13); Meares and Wilson (with the dog teams); and Scott, Bowers, Oates, Cherry-Garrard, and Lashly.
26 Written on Sunday, February 5th at the Corner Camp, No. 6, viz. early days yet. (See Map)
27 We will see, in time, that if only they had gone on for that next "half march," what a difference that would have made; but how was Scott to know? When one examines the routes (See Map, side by side, of both Scott and Amundsen, it can be seen that Amundsen was meticulous in meeting each of the objectives he set for himself and his men. At each degree, it seems exactly, Amundsen built his depot. Scott went as far as he calculated he could go. Note his depots were not evenly spread out as those of Amundsen. To me, this observation is telling.
28 The immense sheet of ice, over 400 miles wide and of still greater length, which lies south of Ross Island to the west of Victoria Land.