The Two North Poles: Background information when reading In the Kingdom of Ice

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In the Kingdom of Ice

The Grand and Terrible Polar Voyage of the USS Jeannette

by Hampton Sides

In the Kingdom of Ice
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     Not Yet Rated
  • First Published:
    Aug 2014, 480 pages
    Paperback:
    May 2015, 496 pages

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Book Reviewed by:
Kim Kovacs

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About this Book

Beyond the Book:
The Two North Poles

In the Kingdom of Ice concerns an ill-fated 19th century expedition to the North Pole.

There are actually two North Poles — a geographic North Pole and a magnetic one. The geographic North Pole is recognized as the northernmost point on the earth's surface, and is the axis point around which the earth spins. It's 450 miles north of Greenland in the middle of the Arctic Ocean.

The magnetic North Pole is approximately 100 miles south of the geographic pole and due north of Canada's Sverdrup Island. It is not fixed and moves on a daily basis; it was first recorded in 1831 hundreds of miles from its current location (82.7° North & 114.4° West in 2005). Because of this, compasses must be regularly adjusted to take into account this drift, a measurement called "declination." This adjustment helps to compensate for any discrepancies between compasses, which point to magnetic North, and maps, which work with true North. The Geographical Survey of Canada monitors the ...

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