A Wretched and Precarious Situation ePUB Ã Wretched

A Wretched and Precarious Situation [BOOKS] ✮ A Wretched and Precarious Situation ✰ David Welky – Thomashillier.co.uk From a snow swept hill in the ice fields northwest of Greenland famed Arctic explorer Robert E Peary spots a line of mysterious peaks dotting the horizon In 1906 he names that distant uncharted territ and Precarious PDF/EPUB ä From a snow swept hill in the ice fields northwest of Greenland famed Arctic explorer Robert E Peary spots a line of mysterious peaks dotting the horizon In he names that distant uncharted territory “Crocker Land” Years A Wretched PDF/EPUB or later two of Peary’s disciples George Borup and Donald MacMillan take the brave steps Peary never did with a team of amateur adventurers and intrepid native guides they endeavor to reach this unknown land and fill in the last Wretched and Precarious MOBI ☆ blank space on the globe What follows is hardship and mishap the likes of which none of the explorers could possibly have imagined From howling blizzards and desperate food shortages to crime and tragedy the explorers experience a remarkable journey of endurance courage and hope Set in one of the world’s most inhospitable places A Wretched and Precarious Situation is an Arctic tale unlike any other.


10 thoughts on “A Wretched and Precarious Situation

  1. Carlos Carlos says:

    35 stars for this one Finally I'm done with this book I was expecting so much I think I been spoiled by reading other books that deal with exploring such as in the kingdom of ice in the heart of the sea that were so good and so full of action and drama that I was expecting the same for this one But such was not the case I mean it was a good book to be nonfiction but I expected action and some deaths But basically this is a book that narrates a trip that went awry that's it Read it if you like books about sea and ice exploration but don't expect a blockbuster Or a movie coming from this one soon


  2. Craig Craig says:

    I have long loved adventure and exploration books especially those about the Arctic Most of these books tell tales of almost incredible terror pain and death This one has a bit less in the way of sheer horror and despair but is no less spellbinding or moving and even has an interesting little mystery that you keep in the back of your mind until the end This is the story of the Crocker Land Expedition that began in 1913 to find a supposed lost continent glimpsed briefly by Admiral Peary while he was occupied trying to reach the North Pole It is really a tale of interpersonal relationships between the various personalities involved the central one of which is Donald MacMillan although it doesn't appear that way in the early chapters of the book As things begin to go disastrously wrong in almost every way the petty jealousies uirks and flaws of the expedition's participants become clear and in one case lead to a shocking murder Has some interesting insight into the arctic natives and how they were perceived by scientists and academics at the time The narrative never gets bogged down in too much detail but at the same time seems well researched The author has an engaging and entertaining writing style it kept me enthralled to the very end I highly recommend this book


  3. Leslie McNamara Leslie McNamara says:

    “In Search of the Last Arctic Frontier” a place called Crocker Land Why have I never heard of this place? If for no other reason I had to read this book to discover the history and legend of this lost land to the northIn the beginning I thought the story was about famed explorer Robert E Peary who named Crocker Land in 1906 after claiming to have reached the North Pole Soon however I found myself enjoying the tales of two friends who had worked under Peary George Borup and Donald MacMillan whose dreams of setting their feet on this new land sent the book off into a new direction Then new players emerge on the scene and we are finally taken on the actual journey of 1913 MacMillan is generally a very likable character who seems to be uite organized but takes things in stride He is a man who knows what he wants and is able to discern the person who is best able to help carry out his plans When something happens to disrupt his plans he easily changes course and continues on in good spiritsI really enjoyed the youthful enthusiasm of chums Borup and MacMillan whose antics were laughable They called their cabin the “Chamber of Horrors” and seemed to find a bright spot in even the worst situations of Arctic life There was a scene in the beginning where Borup and MacMillan wanted to practice how to drive sled dogs so they arranged empty biscuit tins in the shape of a sledge laid out eight frozen dead dogs in front of it and practiced using the 25 foot walrus skin whip until they could hit their target Not all was fun and games in the Arctic however At times murder and secrets and failures amounted to “insufferable mental torture” and the delusional inner turmoil of chilling black winter days which made one lose all sense of proportion The high Arctic was “no place for unstable minds” Perhaps “Mac” was not so good at choosing his men after allUnlike other Arctic expeditions I have read this one had the men deposited safely on shore though not the intended location to set up a home base while the ship that carried them sailed away The plan was for a second ship to come for them in two years long enough for them to accomplish their mission Another plan had been to set up a radio so they could report their findings at regular intervals; however unbeknownst to them the promised radio signal transmission tower was never builtMacMillan’s discoveries about Crocker Land were uite interesting but I’ll save the details for the readers Mac and his expedition partner Fitzhugh Green found several caches that had been left by Peary some years earlier that seemed to disprove some of his claimsBook Two sets us off in a new direction Having been given hints about Green’s unstable character even before they set sail though perhaps Mac had not seen any of this side of his trusted mate we find him slipping further away from sanity Conversely Mac lived in ignorant bliss enthralled with his Arctic wonderland Perhaps he is not turning out to be the good leader that I thought him to be It seems that without a goal but for awaiting their ship boredom and complacency are setting in and mutinous ideas are beginning to unfoldMeanwhile the incompetent self indulgent resentful museum curator Edmund Hovey was hiding information about the expedition from the public in order to scrape up enough funds to hire an ill euipped broken down vessel to try to rescue the men during a time of war Due to the lateness of their arrival and the ineptitude of the ship’s greedy captain three men would be left behind one out of desire one out of dedication and one without his knowledge Little did they know that they would need to assist in rescuing the newly ice bound rescuers and the mutinous men who had been so eager to leave for home After hundreds of miles of grueling sledging south Peter Freuchen a Dane trader who lived in the northern Arctic regions deposited three of the “Crocker Landers” in Danish Greenland in March 1916 to fend for themselves the remainder of the journey and find a way home to New York With assistance from explorerbusinessman Knud Rasmussen one of the men hitched a ride to Copenhagen where he sent telegrams to the museum for a second rescue ship and much needed supplies A year later and another failed rescue attempt only three men from the original Crocker Lander crew Tanuary Allen Green had returned to New York and the grumpy curator Hovey had taken up residence in their original northernmost home base post at EtahCould Ekblaw or Hunt be next? Attempts at reaching home and securing a better means for rescue by the scattered Crocker Lander crew resulted in a “daily existence” that “read like a list of Arctic woes” hungry dogs ear piercing blizzards snow blindness starvation depletion exhaustion and isolation Captain Bob Bartlett who had been denied the opportunity to command the original expedition was now their best hope The Diana Cluett and Danmark had each failed the party but perhaps the Neptune would save them MacMillan Comer Small and Hovey are still in Etah while Ekblaw waited in Godhavn  Would one of the many Arctic death masks stray bullets starvation scurvy hypothermia polar bears walruses slippery glaciers tipping kayaks frigid waters disease etc claim one of them still? Ever willing to trade for oil or bullets as they had become dependent upon the European luxuries even the natives’ food sources were diminishing The Inughuit “deserved a large share of the credit” for the men's’ survivalFour years into their two year mission the final five Crocker Landers were finally home to face matters of war money and the “dramatic changes” that were reshaping society No were the life and death concerns of the seasons tides thickness of ice direction of wind location of game conservation of food and oil supplies or the health of dogs The 1911 proposition of an initial 10000 venture would cost the museum than 190000 by the time the ordeal ended in 1917 And rather than new discoveries scientific specimens and the “life defining moments” of seven men who had “forged tight bonds during their first days together” most of the Crocker Landers preferred to forget the entire expedition MacMillan however would return to the Arctic over two dozen times in the next 30 yearsIn the final chapter Endings author Welky gives an update on the future lives of the players The Epilogue sums up the dream the reason and the last remaining mystery what was in that envelope? A tale well told Photos and a map are included Extraordinary relational insights An amazing achievement by David Welky


  4. Sarah Sarah says:

    I like this adventure genre a lot but it's hard to find adventure books that are also really good books The best books in the adventure genre understand that the human stories are just as important as going to extreme locations and climates This book does just that; it's a great book that is as interesting for the personal stories and group dynamics as it is for the Arctic adventure which is interesting in its own right Also I've been doing grant applications and fundraising all wrongit's all Peary style from here on out I swear there's a new continent out there


  5. Julia Julia says:

    Following explorer Robert Peary's 1905 1906 Arctic expedition he maintained that he had spotted a landmass unknown to science northwest of Canada's Ellesmere Island which he dubbed Crocker Land His assertions inspired Donald MacMillan a teacher and exploration enthusiast who had accompanied Peary on that journey to secure funding and launch a followup trek with the goal of confirming the existence of this potentially new and exciting geographic discovery Author David Welky has researched this second expedition and presented here the detailed story of adventure accidents discoveries surprises disappointments murder and lots of cold cold weatherAlthough not as gripping as I'd hoped – I was expecting decidedly serious situations in which I'd be left wondering Oh no Will they survive? – I'd never heard of MacMillan nor his Arctic journey prior so it was rather fascinating to learn of the amount of sheer work determination and supplies that went into an endeavor like this and the number of things that have to go exactly right in order not to delay plans by days if not months or years Definitely recommended for fans of adventure and exploration


  6. Susan Gallagher Susan Gallagher says:

    I love reading these kinds of stories in winter when I'm at home all snug in my bed tales of people braving the Arctic's bitter cold sleeping in snow houses and living off hunted seals and musk oxen The one thing I wasn't prepared for was all the suffering the poor DOGS went through GOOD LORD I'd avoid this book if animal suffering disturbs you much I wouldn't say the explorers abused the dogs since they were vital to the mission But the animals certainly suffered


  7. Emily Emily says:

    Well researched and written As polar expeditions go this was not the most significant groundbreaking or harrowing but I appreciated the context of America's interest in the uest for the North Pole Welky also conveyed how terribly white explorers treated the Inuit peoples their very lives depended on and how complex their relationships could be 35 stars


  8. James Banzer James Banzer says:

    It was not all that long ago when explorers first penetrated the Arctic A curious history professor's interest in that effort resulted in this fascinating book David Welky's work A Wretched and Precarious Situation In Search of the Last Arctic Frontier looks at the exploration of what was then a brand new frontier One of the early treks into the far north led to a belief that there was a continent called Crocker Land The mistaken assumption was born because of an illusion that was conveyed as fact by famed explorer Robert Peary When the American Museum of Natural History in New York decided to finance an expedition to probe the supposed continent this became big news The continent that didn't exist was named in honor of George Crocker a financial backer of the failed 1906 Peary attempt to reach the North Pole The hubbub was heard loud and clear after Peary related what he thought he had seen on the trip Prospects of finding Crocker Land sparked continued interest in Arctic exploration until the fascination waned because of the First World WarExplorers of this time scarcely than a hundred years ago were a hardy bunch Peary himself lost eight toes amputation necessitated by frostbite Murder was committed by an explorer who later failed to come clean with what really happened There were times of severe lack of ample food to keep the explorers properly nourished After going months without bathing many became infested with liceThe book is spellbinding and very well written It must have been hours of painstaking research to uncover the interesting details Welky deserves high accolades It's one of those works that is difficult to put down If you are like me you probably will be looking for online facts about the people and places mentioned You will love this piece of excellent non fiction if you have a passion for adventure


  9. robyn robyn says:

    More than other books I've read on the subject even the ones where everyone died this one left me wondering why people worked so hard to get to the most inhospitable place on earth There really ought to have been psych tests for the entire crew Once you're out there it's too late and as this book makes plain that wretched and precarious situation brings out your best or your worst and reveals all the fracture lines in your personalityIt also makes pretty plain the ways in which history is so easily rewritten by the last man standing or the first man to the finish line; murderers and liars transformed into heroesAt the very end of the book the author tracks down a letter which was given to the expedition leader at the very beginning of the journey with 'to be opened when everything's gone dead wrong' written on the front He never opened it He carried it through the four years of his sojourn and brought it home unopened The author finds it at the Peary Macmillan Arctic Museum preserved inside a block of Lucite an eternal Schrodinger's Cat What's in it? Who knows? It's a nice touch How many could have resisted opening that letter ? But to open it after a mystery so long deferred is to destroy it really Whatever is in it cannot be as interesting as the speculation Funny that in a book dedicated to men who could not resist the call of that kind of mystery we close with an unopened letterI've no desire to undertake this kind of adventure But it makes for an irresistible read


  10. Steven Steven says:

    This is one of the best examples of history writing that I've read in uite a whileIn 1909 Robert Peary claimed to see a large landmass to the northwest of Ellesmere Island in the arctic He named it Crocker Land after a financial backer of his expedition An expedition was sent north to discover this supposed land mass the 1913 1917 Crocker Land ExpeditionSeven men went north a mix of explorers and scientists supported by the American Museum of Natural History Things started out well but the group faced setback after setback including the location of their camp the weather of course and the gradual tensions that can arise when a group spends dark winters in close uarters Eventually a team was able to reach the supposed location of Crocker Land which wasn't there of course This big disappointment marks the halfway point of the bookThe rest recounts the years of failed rescue attempts a murder of an Inuit guide and the general crumbling of discipline that followed It's fortunate that so many diaries and letters were preserved in archives Welky had a wealth of material to work with The final chapter describing his visit to the archives at Bowdoin touched this librarian's heart as did his acknowledgements sectionAlthough this expedition didn't make any major discoveries I think it's one of the best told tales of arctic adventure I've ever read


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