British Hut at Cape Evans
*Pictures © 1999 Marc unless specified.
A Special Thanks to KYU for his wonderful pictures of this historic hut. © 1999 KYU, and to Susan Allspaw for her
pictures as well. © 1999 S. Allspaw
Antarctic History is filled mith many tales of adventures and heros. One of the stars of the "Heroic Age" was
Robert Falcon Scott. During his ill-fated expedition to reach the pole (1910-1913) Scott and his men erected
this hut at Cape Evans located on Ross Island, Antarctica. Located a few miles north of his first hut at Discovery
Point, Cape Evans Hut is much larger, better stocked, and much more livable.
Located next to Mt. Erebus, Cape Evans Hut included stables to hold the Siberian Ponies that Scott would use on his
attempt at the pole.
Inside the hut items are left just as they were almost 100 years ago following Shckleton's
Ross Sea Party excersion.
What looks kind of cloudy in this picture is due to KYU's breath. The hut is very cold!
The food located in the kitchen is actually so well preserved from the cold that it
would still be edible.
Here is a cheese ball and digestive biscuits.
The Darkroom located in the hut.
Science was always a priority for Scott. Here is one of the chemistry sets located in the hut.
Chemicals can still be found in their original bottles. As a chemist myself, I found this part of the
Another chemistry set.
Chemicals in their bottles with a British Antarctic Expedition "Shore Party" box.
Personal items can also be found around in the hut. Here is a pair of studded boots.
Here are some of the bunks the men slept in. Note personal pictures at top.
Personal pictures and drawing reminded the men of home while they were in the hut for
years without contact from the outside world.
Pictures of favorite dogs, home in England.
More pictures of dogs.
The Men did have time for sport to help keep them in shape. They played soccer and other sports
judging by this hockey stick.
Scott didn't trust dog sleds from his experience during the 1901-1904 expedition. Most likely
the problem was that his team lacked the knowledge on how best to use a dog team. So following Shackleton's
lead from the 1908 expedition, Scott broght Siberian Ponies to do the work. Some say that using ponies
was one of the reasons that Scott had many of his problems trying to get to the South Pole.
Here are the stables the ponies were kept in.
There were many disadvantages for bringing ponies instead of dogs. One was that they tended
to punch through softer snow very easily. So snowshoes were made for the ponies. The circular devices fit over
the ponies hoof.
Another problem with using ponies for long treks is that you have to haul a lot of feed and hay for the
ponies themselves. There is more energy/weight for food given to the dogs. Also if a pony died, they could
not be fed to the other ponies, but dogs would eat other dogs if the situation was desperate.
Dr. Wilson was one of the first people to study the emperor penguins found in the region. Wilson, Bowers,
and Cherry-Garrard made a daring winter trip to Cape Crozier to observe the Males incubating their eggs in the colony.
The amazing trip with some of the worst winter weather experienced is described in described in
The Worst Journey in the World by Cherry-Garrard.
A few of the eggs were brought back to Evans for study of the
embryos. These eggs were probably not from that trip but are located in the hut today.
There is a emperor penguin located on the table next to Scott's bunk.
Other artifacts on the table include this newspaper.
Here is the table looking toward Scott's Bunk.
Reindeer skin sleeping bags were the standard sleeping gear for this era expedition.
Closeup of Scott's Bunk.
The Cape Evans Hut was also used again during Shackleton's attempt at a trans-antarctic crossing.
Stranded men for the "Ross Sea party" tried deperately to conserve their resources and lay depots toward
the pole expecting Shackleton. Unaware of the tragedy of the Endurance on the other side of the continent,
laying depots took its hazardous toll and three men lost their lives. A cross on the hill above Cape Evans Hut is for
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