“The fine snow choked his eyes, ears, and throat, and he did not hear his own smothered death cry. Down in cold blackness, 150 feet down, his falling body smashed into a projecting ledge of ironclad ice. With the shattered remains of his sledge, with the doomed dogs, Belgrave Ninnis plunged deeper and deeper into the abyss.” —Lennard Bickel’s Mawson’s Will.

In NEAR DEATH IN THE ARCTIC, editor Cecil Kuhne gathers astonishing tales of man versus nature, all set against the bleakly beautiful backdrop of the poles of the earth. On foot, by ship, or by dog-powered sledge, these adventurers brave the most savage and desolate environment on earth, their instinct for self-preservation and survival exceeded only by their desire for excitement and discovery.

Also featuring: Captain Roald Amundsen’s The South Pole, the heart-pounding story of Amundsen’s race to be the first man to reach both Poles despite driving snow, exhausted dogs, and towering glaciers; Ernest Shackleton’s South, a riveting memoir of the doomed Endurance, which became trapped in dangerous pack ice that eventually tore the ship apart; and Mike Stroud’s Shadows on the Wasteland, the unbelievable account of a two-man, ninety-day trek across the Antarctic continent through temperatures as low as minus eighty-five degrees Celsius.

Cecil Kuhne is the editor of two previous anthologies on adventure travel, ON THE EDGE and THE ARMCHAIR PADDLER. In this series is NEAR DEATH ON THE HIGH SEAS, NEAR DEATH IN THE DESERT, and NEAR DEATH IN THE MOUNTAINS. A former whitewater rafting guide, he has also written nine books about rafting, kayaking, and canoeing. He lives in Dallas.