Unseen Shackleton Diary Extracts

Shackleton Diary:  Click on links below to view diary pages

Elephant Island Landing 1

Elephant Island Landing 2

Elephant Island Landing 3

Elephant Island Departure

6th August 2015


To mark the anniversary of Britain’s legendary explorer Ernest Shackleton, The Ultimate Travel Company will set sail for the Antarctic in January 2016, with a private collection of diary extracts and photography.

Roddie Wordie – grandson of Shackleton expedition member, Sir James Wordie – will be on board with his grandfather’s diary extracts – many of which have never been seen before.

Retracing the steps of the historic Imperial Trans-Antarctic Expedition of 1914-1917, the tour will make its way from Ushuaia via the Falklands and South Georgia, Argentina to the white continent itself, Antarctica.

For the centenary of the Shackleton expedition, the vessel will attempt to visit Elephant Island, the site where half of Shackleton’s crew were stranded for four months after the sinking of Endurance and finally rescued by Shackleton himself.

The collection of diary entries highlight the crew’s survival instincts and the extremities endured during the severe weather conditions, as shown below:

Shackleton’s expedition is often considered the final major voyage to explore the Antarctic, its audacious main goal being to complete the first land-based crossing of the continent.

Roddie Wordie said:
“It’s so exciting to read from Grandfather’s diary of the Imperial Trans-Antarctic Expedition and visit these same places as described in the diary. It’ll be a unique experience since the diary has never been published and very few people outside the family have had an opportunity to read this brilliantly detailed account.”

To provide a more modern backdrop to the theme of polar exploration, Henry Worsley, seasoned adventurer and ex-Lieutenant Colonel in the British Army, will be joining the cruise immediately after his attempted solo, unsupported, crossing of the Antarctic Peninsula. He’ll be sharing his experiences of the arduous 80 day, 1,000 mile expedition with the tour members – enriching the tour with first-hand experience.

Nick Van Gruisen, Director of The Ultimate Travel Company, said:
“Having visited Antarctica to commemorate Scott’s centennial of his doomed expedition a few years ago, it is with great excitement and interest that I look forward to revisiting the area in further depth learning of Shackleton’s equally heroic but less tragic journey. To share this experience with Henry Worsely, one of Antarctica’s greatest living explorers and Roddie Wordie the grandson of the original expedition’s Geologist is a great privilege – their knowledge of the events and the memorabilia they will bring will add an extra dimension to make this a truly unique visit.”


For further information please contact Charlotte Corner at Search Laboratory on 0113 2121211 or Charlotte.Corner@searchlaboratory.com or view the tour itinerary.


Sir Ernest Henry Shackleton was an Irish-born British explorer who was a principal figure of the period known as the Heroic Age of Antarctic Exploration. Notably, Shackleton is remembered for his Trans-Antarctic Expedition from 1914-17, which was ultimately unsuccessful, as the Endurance became trapped in pack ice close to the Antarctic continent, resulting in its sinking. His crew took the treacherous journey across the pack ice toward land, hauling their lifeboats by hand where possible, and taking to them when the ice thinned.

The crew eventually landed on the desolate Elephant Island, hundreds of miles from mainland civilisation. Shackleton decided to take a small crew on one of the lifeboats and head to South Georgia to summon a rescue party for the remaining expedition members – a decision that saved their lives. Despite failing to complete their expeditions aim, the crew are now hailed as heroes who never wavered in the face of unspeakable odds.


The Ultimate Travel Company was established in 1991 with the aim of creating tailor-made, luxury holidays and unrivalled escorted tours. The company has over 30 years of experience in organising worldwide travel with more than 40 experts who have all been there and done it and are crowned winner of ‘Best Luxury Tour Operator’ 2013 in The Times Travel Awards.

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