stefansson-wrangel-09-25-006-050

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decided to get back to solid ice and camp. Built a snow wall and put a
tarpaulin over it (a sort of camp intermediate in comfort between a snowhouse,
which is better, and a tent, which is much worse). Both primus stoves are
out of order and Crawford worked with them for several hours, at last getting
one of them working after a fashion. There does not seem to be a chance to
get to the mainland now from here and Crawford and I have been racking our
brains on the best thing to do. Matters now stand thus: We have only five
dogs, a weak sled, and not a great deal of provisions, and the ice is so
bad that we cannot travel to sea to get open water (for sealing to replenish
the traveling food supplies). I am nearly all in. I hate to admit this
but I am sure I can't help it. My scurvy has been coming back for the last
month or two although I have said nothing to anyone about it except Crawford.
When we started I was in hopes of fairly good going and a chance to get fresh
meat, but I find that my legs go back on me in this rough ice where I am
forced to get in harness to help the dogs. When we do get in rough ice the
dogs can hardly haul the load on account of the temperature which is very low,
and I am afraid of the sled which is none too strong. Our gait on level ice
is about two and a half miles per hour.

"This is what we have planned to do. We will go back
to camp and lighten the sled load as much as possible (so there will be less
danger of breaking the sled) and Crawford and Galle will start south and
make as much time as they possibly can. It will be impossible for all of us
to stay at the land main camp, for there is just enough grub there for three
people to last until the seals and birds come. I would like to make this trip
but I really do not feel able. This is just a rough outline of our plans;
more later. Crawford has several of his finger tips frozen and they give him
considerable pain, but nothing serious. A fairly fresh bear track seen going
east."

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