107 years after it sank after being crushed by ice in the Weddel Sea, Shackleton’s ship the Endurance has been located by remote submersibles 3000m deep and in a remarkable state of preservation.
Wow, what an achievement!
Full story here : BBC News - Endurance: Shackleton’s lost ship is found in Antarctic
Mmm, t’was a different world then Maree and besides, explorers have different rules to the rest of us and there couldn’t have been a man on board that didn’t know the risks associated with the voyage. Different times then, and without the courage of such men in times past we would all be the poorer for it now.
In my younger day I would have been privileged to sail with Ernest despite the challenges Maree, and I like to think that his crew (all volunteers) would have felt the same.
Thanks for bringing that to our attention Barry, exciting subject.
By and large there are some great factual programmes on the BBC Harbal, and despite their biased news and politically correct current affairs shows I still value many of their documentaries and other none political programmes, and it provokes me to still obtain a licence.
The project to find the lost ship was mounted by the Falklands Maritime Heritage Trust (FMHT), using a South African icebreaker, Agulhas II, and equipped with remotely operated submersibles.
The mission’s leader, the veteran polar geographer Dr John Shears, described the moment cameras landed on the ship’s name as “jaw-dropping”.
“The discovery of the wreck is an incredible achievement,” he added.
“We have successfully completed the world’s most difficult shipwreck search, battling constantly shifting sea-ice, blizzards, and temperatures dropping down to -18C. We have achieved what many people said was impossible.”
Finding a needle in a haystack would have been easier … but with the right technology and luck, yet another “lost” shipwreck is found:
Interestingly, the wreck has been colonised by an abundance of life - but not of the type that would consume it.
“It would appear that there is little wood deterioration, inferring that the wood-munching animals found in other areas of our ocean are, perhaps unsurprisingly, not in the forest-free Antarctic region,” commented deep-sea polar biologist Dr Michelle Taylor from Essex University.
“The Endurance, looking like a ghost ship, is sprinkled with an impressive diversity of deep-sea marine life - stalked sea squirts, anemones, sponges of various forms, brittlestars, and crinoids (related to urchins and sea stars), all filter feeding nutrition from the cool deep waters of the Weddell Sea.”
I’m not convinced they are biased, I just think their neutrality isn’t quite right wing enough for some people. I don’t like political correctness, but being a public body, I daresay they are obliged to adhere to some constraints that independent organisations aren’t.