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The Worst Journey in the World: Antarctic 1910-1913 [Kindle Edition]

Apsley Cherry-Garrard
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)

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Book Description

This volume is a narrative of Scott's Last Expedition from its departure from England in 1910 to its return to New Zealand in 1913. It does not, however, include the story of subsidiary parties except where their adventures touch the history of the Main Party. It is hoped later to publish an appendix volume with an account of the two Geological Journeys, and such other information concerning the equipment of, and lessons learned by, this Expedition as may be of use to the future explorer. PREFACE

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 976 KB
  • Print Length: 607 pages
  • Publisher: Library of Alexandria (27 Dec. 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B006L7RP3G
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #109,970 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best book in the world 15 May 2013
This is easily the best travel/exploration book I've ever read.

The author was a young member of the landed gentry who had no real qualifications for inclusion in Scott's expedition and would have been automatically excluded on grounds of his poor sight alone. He offered the enormous sum of £5,000 to be included in the party and was rejected by Scott. He then told Scott that he could keep the £5,000 and Scott, impressed by this grand gesture and encouraged by Wilson, who knew Cherry, decided to take him as an "assistant zoologist" for which Cherry had few if any qualifications.

His journey with Wilson and Bowers in the pitch dark of the Antarctic winter to collect a handful of penguin eggs was one of the most amazing feats of endurance and sheer bloody-mindedness ever undertaken. The journey was of course overshadowed by the ultimate fate of Scott's polar party, but must be read to be believed. The irony of how Cherry and his ill-fated companions struggled in the face of death to get a couple of eggs and how he managed to carry them back to London where they were treated with indifference by the Natural History Museum adds a touch of pathos to the whole thing.

Cherry's description of the loss of Scott's party and the start of his life-long agonising over how he might have saved Scott is startling in its power to evoke sympathy even a century later. Cherry was consumed with regret for the rest of his life and endured years of depression as he wondered what might have been.

This is a truly wonderful book on a dozen different levels. It's a fantastic account of an epic journey, but so much more. Full of dry humour and droll wit. And above all a real insight into Scott from somebody who worked under him and saw his methods and character at first hand.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
By Escal
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Cherry- Garrard was one of the unsung heroes of Scott's last polar expedition. With two others, he undertook a journey of some weeks duration, through the polar night, to find eggs of the Emperor Penguin. Their experiences were quite unbelievable and the fortitude they displayed incredible. Imagine spending an hour each night thawing your way into your sleeping bag so you could lie in tepid dampness rather than freeze!. My writing skills do not let me do justice to the toughness and heroism of this man and his colleagues. If you never read another book about polar exploration, read this one. Only given four stars because he is a slow though methodical writer. Passages can safely be skimmed through with no loss of understanding of the whole.
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By Blackju
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Cherry Gerrard provides a vivid description of the whole of Scott's sad tale to the pole in 1910-1913 including a description of the shattering discovery of the tent containing Scott, Bowers and Dr Wilson which brought me to tears. It also includes detail of the extraordinary trip that he undertook with Birdie Bowers and Dr Wilson to collect some Emperor penguin eggs to see if they provided an evolutionary link between birds and reptiles. It was a 5 week journey undertaken in almost complete darkness over horrendous terrain and in unbelievable weather. At
one point their tent is blown away and it seems that all will be lost......somehow, Birdie spots the tent flapping in the distance and so ensures their survival. I was not sure whether it was a tale of immense heroism or immense stupidity to undertake the trip in the first place - these men were giants in their determination to complete their task against all the odds.

Cherry Gerrard provides some thoughts about why Scott might have decided to take 5 men to the Pole rather than the 4 which had always been planned (so food, accommodation, equipment etc etc was all based on 4 rather than 5 men), and gives his insights into the myth of Scott which persists today. A wonderful, compelling read - it brought me to tears on a number of occasions.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars the worst journey in the world 21 Feb. 2013
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Great read. One of the best stories of hardship and endurance in Antarctica exploration.Sadly also questions organisation of the expedition.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Increadable Story 5 Sept. 2014
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The actual 'winter journey' was amazing and that was all I expected the book to be about, so I was pleasantly surprised to realize it detailed the whole expedition. Having read Scotts Journals it was good to see the expedition from another angle.

Very well written, unbiased account of the highs and lows.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Great writing - though some slower bits 21 Sept. 2013
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This book, written by one of the members of Scott's extended team on his final South Polar expedition, has been described as the greatest travel book ever. The Worst Journey in the World of the title is, though, not Scott's fatal one, but the author's own winter journey in darkness with two companions to retrieve Emperor penguin eggs. That dark and bleak journey is well told, as was the suffering of the Last Return Party and the sufferings by scurvy of one of its members that left him temporarily abandoned (he later made a full recovery). Scott's final, fatal journey is of course very gripping and tragic, with Scott's own diary entries recounting the diminishing number of miles covered each day and half day, the worsening weather conditions and the deteriorating physical weakness of his party (though one of the five, Edgar Evans, considered the strongest, actually weakened and died before those extreme weather conditions set in). This is a superb sequence of writing, though I suppose I was disappointed that Scott's final journey only took up a small portion of the book (2 of 19 chapters). Between these three dramatic accounts of specific journeys, there are long passages which, while well written, do get rather repetitive, with sometimes over long quotes from individuals' accounts that cover the same or very similar ground. So I do have to say in all honesty that this did drag in places. Read more ›
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