- Project Runeberg -  Through Siberia - the land of the future /
62

(1914) [MARC] Author: Fridtjof Nansen Translator: Arthur G. Chater - Tema: Russia
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Full resolution (JPEG) - On this page / på denna sida - IV. Open sea, eastward to the Yenisei

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THROUGH SIBERIA
heave on it with the big steam-winch aft. It was a
slow business, and a great strain on the tackle ; the
whole vessel shook ; when the anchor had come about
20 fathoms aft, the steel cable snapped with the violent
heaving.
Then the after-tank was filled to lift the forepart,
and after that we tried heaving on the anchor, while
the engines went full speed astern. It was no use, we
did not move. The port-anchor was also lowered, and all
the chain cable was paid out to lighten the bows ; but
wc lay just as fast as before. A kedge was rowed
straight out from the port quarter, and heaved on to
turn the vesseFs stem to port, where the water was
deepest. But the kedge did not hold.
We then got ready to shift the barrels of cement
aft with the boats ; but meanwhile the ship, which lay
over to port, had righted a little ; the tide must have
risen. We decided to try once more with heaving on
the starboard anchor, going full speed astern, and then
heaving on to the kedge too, with what wire there was
left. Meanwhile, I stood and kept an eye on the com
pass. The propeller spun round, the winches roared
and worked so that the whole vessel shook. Suddenly
I thought I felt a tiny jerk, and the compass-needle
moved a quarter of a degree. Soon it was a little more,
almost half a degree ; then still more, and then—
at last—the ship swung round, faster and faster.
The compass moved a whole degree, 2 degrees, 3, 5, 10,
15 degrees, and then she glided off, going slowly astern,
and was afloat once more.
Great rejoicing. It cost some trouble to get in the
port anchor, which still lay at the bottom with all its
cable, and in heaving on it we pulled the ship back to
the bank ; but at last we got clear of that difficulty too.
We only had one mishap ; as the ship glided stern
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