Icy Hell: Experiences of a News Real Cameraman in the Aleutian Islands, Eastern Siberia and the Arctic Fringe of Alaska.

p. 59: A few hours out of Petropavlosk as we headed north we found the ice! Into the Arctic ice at last! What a thrill, to say the least. All of the polar stories that I had read came back to me. From the time I was a small boy and read my first stories of adventures in the ice I had dreamed and longed for the experience of being in this ice wilderness. Mental pictures of Deschev, Bering, Cook, Kane, Amundsen, Scott, Peary, Shackleton, Stefansson and the host of others who have written their names in the pages of North and South Polar exploration passed in review.

p. 156: A writer of fiction who is interested in sea stories that contain a lot of ice, Eskimos, whales, bear, walrus, and real hard-bitten travelers, should by all means to Point Barrow and spend at least a year. The natives there have not been spoiled by too much civilization. Most of them can read and write. They now have radio and magazines. Some of them have been able to make the trip as far south as Nome. As a result of these contacts they are enlightened to a degree, but have not lost their ancient traditions and customs.

p. 176: We were going through the first stages of being able to hunt one another. I was suffering from lack of reading material. One day I came across a copy of Victor Hugo’s famed Les Misérables. That was a life-saver. I learned plenty about Jean Valjean during those days in the ice. I longed for an opportunity to take him from the slums of Paris and take him to the ice at Manning Point. A good cooling off might have caused him to change his style of crime.

p. 177: Our chances for getting back to Point Barrow or into good winter quarters at Herschell Island were getting slimmer and fainter day by day. I continued to read Victor Hugo. The mate was digging into the essays of Herbert Spencer with a vengeance. Our poker tournament was at high pressure at all times. I am quite positive that we derived great good from these red-hot poker sessions. These after-dinner battles prevented a lot of friction, and the morale of the party was kept up because they were busy mentally.

p. 190: While looking over an old log-book of Captain Cottle’s I was surprised to find the complete record of a baseball series that had been played on the ice during the days when the fleet of the northern whalers was a fleet, some forty or fifty ships.

p. 304, on arriving at Circle, north of Fairbanks, near the Arctic Circle: In the lobby of this cozy little northern hotel we found stacks of papers and magazines fresh from the outside. Some of them were not over four years old. That was getting back to normal. Just before our cordial hostess announced dinner the radio operator came in with a bundle of news bulletins from the outside.

1965 US Coast Guard Surveillance Voyage to Russia’s Kara Sea (aboard USCGC Windward )