After being crushed by sea-ice and sinking 107 years ago, the Endurance — Antarctic explorer Sir Ernest Shackleton's lost ship — was found over the weekend. Scientists on the discovery expedition, organized by the Falklands Maritime Heritage Trust, identified the Endurance on the floor of the Weddell Sea, almost 10,000ft deep. And the ship — which sunk in 1915 — is still "in remarkable condition," according to BBC. (See video of the discovered ship below.)
"We have successfully completed the world's most difficult shipwreck search, battling constantly shifting sea-ice, blizzards, and temperatures dropping down to -18C," the mission's leader, Dr John Shears, told the BBC. "We have achieved what many people said was impossible."
Shears described the moment they saw the word "Endurance" on the ship as "jaw-dropping."
Even though it has been sitting in 3km (10,000ft) of water for over a century, it looks just like it did on the November day it went down.
Its timbers, although disrupted, are still very much together, and the name – Endurance – is clearly visible on the stern.
"Without any exaggeration this is the finest wooden shipwreck I have ever seen – by far," said marine archaeologist Mensun Bound, who is on the discovery expedition and has now fulfilled a dream ambition in his near 50-year career. …
For over two weeks, the subs had combed a predefined search area, investigating various interesting targets, before finally uncovering the wreck site on Saturday – the 100th anniversary of Shackleton's funeral. The days since the discovery have been spent making a detailed photographic record of the timbers and surrounding debris field.
The wreck itself is a designated monument under the international Antarctic Treaty and must not be disturbed in any way. No physical artefacts have therefore been brought to the surface.