As a sidelight, I note he and his men planned to walk north from Baker Lake in order to get inside the Arctic Circle. In the Crowsnest Pass region we had one man with our expedition who had been "inside the Circle." He was much revered by the others and nothing that he wanted was too good for him. Seemed to live sort of a charmed life, as it were.
MILES O. KING
The diary of Art Moffatt in a way reminded me of Robert Scott, whose small party lost to Amundsen in the fateful rush for the South Pole. The same premonition of disaster—the still small voice a whispering in his ear. Just as with Scott, this showed itself at the start: delays and other little things snowballed into insurmountable roadblocks.
The deep love Art had for his wife and children reminded me once again of the Scott diary. But to turn back was the one thing Art could not do. As with Mallory on his last scaling of Everest, it was there. One fine fellow, and his memory should live.
CLARENCE P. WOODBURY
Fort Wayne, Ind.
The news that Art Moffatt died brought tears to my wife's eyes.
From his diary, I'd say he was one heck of a nice guy to know. He gave it the real try!
Los Altos, Calif.
Having spent 10 summers in the heart of the canoe country north of Rainy Lake, Minn., our appreciation of the outdoors was cultivated early. Through our association with the late Bernard S. Mason, noted woodcraft and Indian author, a deep feeling for the canoeland and its way of life became imbedded in us.
Reading the excerpts from the Moffatt diary, the route as it unfolded seemed similar to that followed in 1912 by Ernst Oberholtzer, a Rainy Lake resident presently active in preservation of the remaining Minnesota- Ontario canoe country, and Billy McGee, an Indian, on their trip, which has been the subject of talks by Oberholtzer to groups in the Rainy Lake area. Commencing in Rainy Lake and starting without the aid of maps in June, these men traveled through Reindeer Lake, Nueltin Lake, Baker Lake, Chesterfield Inlet and along Hudson Bay before returning through Lake Winnipeg to the Rainy Lake area in November of the same year.
Without in any way detracting from the achievements of the Moffatt group, we believe a salute to Ernst Oberholtzer appropriate along with the recent tributes paid the Moffatt group.
That Man Against the Barren Grounds is an interesting and faithful portrayal of the Moffatt expedition testifies to the skill and integrity of SPORTS ILLUSTRATED.
There were three factors influencing Moffatt when he wrote his journal. One: his fingers were on the verge of freezing so that he had to blow on them after every other word to keep the pen from slipping out of his hand. Two: squeezed shoulder to shoulder, hip to hip, into a tent with Joe Lanouette, privacy was an impossibility. And three: being unaware that anyone would read his journal after the trip was over except .himself, he wrote only that which was of interest to himself. These three factors—cold hands, lack of privacy and an unawareness that anyone would read the journal except himself—were responsible for the clipped, mostly impersonal and obscure style of Moffatt's journal. Nevertheless, your editors have taken the journal and, while preserving its flavor, have yet managed to present a clear, interesting and undistorted portrait of the trip; for which I and, I'm sure, the other members of the expedition are very thankful.
GEORGE J. GRINNELL
New York City