Peter McKay is a former Scottish Office civil servant brought up in Glasgow. He is a long standing member of the Scottish Arctic Club and he and his wife have climbed and kayaked on many occasions in Greenland and Alaska. He has never been to the Antarctic (and won`t go) but has had a lifelong interest in Arctic and Antarctic exploration. This began when his father at the Victoria Infirmary had as a patient the widow of the man who took over as the leader of the expedition after the death of Scott in 1912. She gave him a copy of “Scott`s Last Expedition” which he still treasures.
Summary of talk
Shackleton died in 1922 so a century on, and in the year in which the wreck of his ship the Endurance was discovered, itis fitting to take stock of a little known part of his Endurance expedition: the role of his Ross Sea party. Their task was to follow the Scott and Shackleton expedition routes across the Great ice barrier and lay depots for Shackleton and party as they completed the crossing of the Antarctic continent via the South Pole. They achieved what they set out to do despitetremendous hardship, much of it attributable to Shackleton`s hasty and inadequate planning and preparation. Shackleton is today regarded by many business schools as the paradigm of the great leader; while not detracting from his great strengths Peter will put that in perspective in the light of the Ross Sea party` s experience as ordinary people doing extraordinary things.