He did what now? In that boat? Shackelton, you incredible maniac! 

“Sir Ernest Shackleton’s name will for evermore be engraved with letters of fire in the history of Antarctic exploration” – Roald Amundsen

Who doesn’t love a good adventure story? Shackelton just may be he craziest, bravest, most persistent,  most incredible human to ever exist! Well, I think he’s pretty cool anyway, even though he’s a bit of a maniac…. all the best people are right?

If you’ve never heard of the expedition run by Good old Ernest in the years of 1914-1917 on his ship, the Endurance, then you should stop what you’re doing immediately (after you’ve finished reading my brief summary and post), and find yourself a copy of Endurance – the book. It’s heart stopping and page turning and gripping and scary and exciting and all things incredible, said read it in 4 days once I got my hands on it! I was inspired by the memorabilia and countless stories I’d heard about Antarctic exploration and incredible voyages that left from Punta Arenas and Ushuaia, especially the story of Shackelton.

I won’t spoil the story for you, but I will show you some pictures of a replica life-boat he sailed in after the (spoiler alert) Endurance was crushed and destroyed by ice and his crew was stranded on an ice flow and basically epic after epic a bunch of amazing and terrifying stuff happened.  Seriously, read the book! Or at least read about his adventure by visiting this link.

I got to see this replica real size boat of the lifeboat he sailed across at one point to get help for his crew to be rescued. It was so small! There were other replicas at this museum including the famous HMS Beagle (It actually has a tiny Beagle at the front), at the NAO Victoria museum about 7km out of Punta Arenas. It’s not easy to get to, and a pretty boring walk, but once you’re there it’s quite intriguing, all these ships anchored on land gathered next to the Magellan Strait.
Here are a few photos from my sunny day spent exploring every nook and cranny these boats hid.

I learnt about sea navigation and life on the move (slow salty ship life as sailors circumnavigated the globe for the first few times!). I wish I was alive when there were places still undiscovered on this earth. It must have been so exciting….  and a tough life!

Here is the replica boat shakelton sailed in after his Endurance sunk. It was so small.

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