Ernest Shackleton’s Hut, Cape Royds
This is the base associated with Sir Ernest Shackleton’s British Antarctic (Nimrod) Expedition 1907–1909. The expedition is notable for a number of firsts. In March 1908 a party of five was the first to climb the world’s southernmost volcano (Mt Erebus). In January 1909, fifty year old Professor Edgeworth David led a party of three to be the first to reach the Magnetic South Pole (an epic 1600km sledging trip). In late 1908 Shackleton led a party of four in an attempt to be the first to reach the Geographic South Pole. After man-hauling for two and a half months, and less than 97 nautical miles from the Pole, Shackleton made a decision, considered to be the finest in early polar history, to turn for home. The expedition also discovered over 800km of new mountain range and pioneered the way to the Antarctic Plateau.
In 2004 after two years of planning, the Trust commenced a major four-year conservation programme to secure and weatherproof the building and conserve the 6,100+ artefacts. Work was completed in 2008 on time and to budget. An annual maintenance and monitoring plan has been put in place.
During the Antarctic summer of 2012, the Trust partnered with Google and the Polar Geospatial Center to capture the interior and exterior of the explorer’s bases including Shackleton’s base at Cape Royds as part of Google’s World Wonders Project.