American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

North America, Greenland, British Joint Services Expedition to North Peary Land

  • Climbs And Expeditions
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  • Publication Year: 1970

British Joint Services Expedition to North Peary Land. The Joint Services Expedition selected an area north of latitude 83° N. It comprised the peninsula separated from the remainder of Peary Land by Hyde Fjord. This peninsula, about 3,000 square miles, contains the Roosevelt Range, rising to 6300 feet and the Benedict Mountains of somewhat lesser height. Although not covered by the icecap, these mountains are heavily glaciated. The area is within 500 miles of the North Pole and forms the most northerly land on the globe. On May 2 the 250-mile airlift from Station North to Kap Morris Jesup started, being completed nearly 24 hours later after four round trips. During the first phase, we completed a closed telurometer and theodolite survey traverse around the peninsula. One group also completed the first high-level crossing of the peninsula. The total distance actually travelled during the journey around the peninsula was some 380 miles in two months. The inland party covered approximately 150 miles in various reconnaissances in the 3½ weeks between leaving Friggs Fjord and arriving at Kap Morris Jesup. The whole party left Kap Morris Jesup on July 10 to move inland into the Roosevelt Range. Geological, glaciological and other scientific studies were made. In all 21 peaks above 4000 feet were climbed including the two highest mountains, Helvetia Tinde (Swiss Peak; 6300 feet) and P 1890 (6200 feet), as well as several smaller summits. All exploration took place in the Roosevelt Range, the Benedict Mountains having to be abandoned because of the increased time needed to finish the survey. Ten members of the expedition reached the summit of Swiss Peak. No peak was really difficult. We left Peary Land on September 2. Nine members were chosen from all three Services and two were civilian geologists: Lieutenants A.D.F. Dalton, C.F. Grant, A.M. Griffin, and H.P. May, Flight Lieutenants S.G. Lloyd-Morri- son and C.E. Shorrocks, Flying Officer B.K. Reid, Chief Petty Officer I.W. Cox, Sergeant R.A. Fountain, Dr. P.R. Dawes, Dr. N.J. Soper, and myself as leader.

John D.C. Peacock, Major, MA, REME; Alpine Club

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