The First Ice Drift
Setting out north across the Beaufort Sea ice, Stefansson's
first exploration party left Collinson Point in March 1914, three sleds heading
out into an area where new land had been reported. They intended to drift with
the moving ice for several months before landing at Banks or Prince Patrick Island.
After drifting though the area where "Keenan Land" was thought to be,
Stefansson and his companions, Ole Andreasen and Storker Storkersen, travelled
across the ice to Banks Island, arriving in late June after 96 days and 800 km
Late in the summer of 1914, George Wilkins, expedition
photographer, took the schooner Mary Sachs
from Herschel Island to Banks Island with supplies for Stefansson's
Party. Stefansson joined them in September after a summer of hunting on Banks
Island. The Northern Party spent the early winter of 1914-1915 at the base established
by Wilkins near Cape Kellett, known then as the "Kellett Base," now known
as Mary Sachs.