- Project Runeberg -  Through Siberia - the land of the future /
51

(1914) [MARC] Author: Fridtjof Nansen Translator: Arthur G. Chater - Tema: Russia
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THROUGH THE ICE NORTHWARD
51
spot; but after his first shot they plunged into the
water in a shower of spray ; the wounded walrus came
up again and luckily clambered back on to the floe ;
the thing was to wait till wc were quite close ; and
after a few more shots it turned over on its side and
rolled into the water. We tried the harpoon in vain on its
thick hide ; it was too blunt, for the whole edge was
broken off ; but then we managed to strike a hooked
spike into the walrus, and after cutting a loop in its
skin we made fast the harpoon-line and took the beast
in tow.
It was pretty hard work in the little dinghy ; the stern
was mostly under water with the weight, and there
was a good deal of wind and choppy sea besides. But
at last wc reached the ship ; the walrus was hoisted
on deck and photographed from every side by four
enthusiastic photographers, who had been going up
and down all day long like roaring lions, seeking what
they might devour.
Meanwhile the weather had turned rainy and thick,
but at last we came round the end of the big floe and
were able to steer in towards land again to the north
north-east and north-east.
The channel now looked fairly open, and most of
the time we were able to go at full steam. But late
in the afternoon there was more ice ; we had to reduce
speed, especially as the weather was thick. The wind
had freshened and changed to about south, sometimes
east of south.
At about 8 p.m. the thick weather stopped us
and we anchored in 16 fathoms of water. The wind
increased nearly to a gale. There was a strong north
ward current and much ice.
Then at about eleven we weighed anchor, as we were
lying in a nasty position between two big floes which

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