stefansson-wrangel-09-29-023

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174

from the north and drifting so thick that at times I could not see the leader.
But, like the good dog he is, he did not leave the trail once. But the best news
of all I received from Galle. Coming home about an hour before me he saw a bear
alongside the house eating some walrus skin. He shot and hit it but the bear did
not stop until Galle fired again.. . . . It was skinned and cut up when I got home.”

December 16: "l went to the other camp, taking them some bear
meat, and hauled some wood for them. Galle went to the traps but got nothing.
He saw a bear . . . but before he could get within shooting distance it turned out
on the sea ice and escaped." "Maurer and Crawford are planning coming to this
camp for Christmas."

On December 24th: "I went to the other camp and found that a bear
had been there this morning while they were asleep but before they got out it had
become frightened and had run away." Such entries are numerous and show that the
party were still extremely optimistic. On journeys when Knight had been with me
and on others of which he must have heard us talking frequently, we used to take
turns day and night watching so that no animal that approached camp had a chance
to get away. There is not a single entry in Knight's diary to indicate that they
even considered doing this. Evidently they continued to feel that it did not make
much difference how many chances they missed; there would always be an abundance
of other chances. Wrangell Island was to them still a game paradise beyond any-
thing they had experienced or heard about, and they took it for granted it would
always continue so.

No one who has kept a diary on an exploring expedition will be
surprised or critical because Knight leaves the most important things to be
inferred from the context or to be detected by some casual reference later. My
experience, at least, has been that although I keep more voluminous notes than most
travelers, still the things that stick in my memory after a lapse of years are
usually the ones that have never been mentioned in the record of the day. So it

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