Mawson outlined

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Mawson outlined

Post  lynk2510 on Wed Aug 17, 2011 9:28 am

On 27 October 1912, Mawson outlined the summer sledging program. Seven sledging parties would depart from Cape Denison, surveying the coast and interior of Adélie Land and neighbouring King George V Land. They were required to return to the base by 15 January, when the Aurora was due to depart; any later, it was feared, and she would be trapped by ice. Bickerton was to lead one of the parties, which would use the air-tractor to haul four sledges and explore the coast to the west of the hut. Most of the parties left in early November, but Bickerton's Western party delayed until December, in the hope of avoiding the ferocious winter winds.[35] Work on the air-tractor sledge was delayed by the fierce winds, and the first trial took place on 15 November, between the main base and Aladdin's Cave—a depot which had been established on the plateau above Cape Denison.[34] The air-tractor reached a speed of 20 miles per hour (32 km/h), covering the 5 miles (8.0 km), expedition member Charles Laseron recorded, "in great style".[34][36] Soon, the sledge began hauling cargo up the slope, laying depots for the summer sledging parties.[34][37]
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