This is how team mate Professor Ross Marvin checked how far
North they were using a sextant. They built a wind
shelter with blocks of snow. Then he set up his instrument to record
the sun angle. He is trying to find the "noon culmination"—the
highest point in the sky reached by the sun. By measuring that angle he
can determine their latitude—how far north they are.
Many people do not understand why
Peary never checked longitude (position east or west). It turns out that near the Pole it
is much simpler to navigate than people understood. Longitude
converges at the Pole. Think about that for a minute. All one has to
do is travel due north because at the Pole there is no east or west. It
is the single point about which the earth rotates. In fact, Captain
Amundsen's team that discovered the South Pole navigated the same way
that Commander Peary did. The English guy, Robert Scott wasted too much
time trying to determine longitude because he did not understand what
Peary and Amundsen knew about navigation.
The triangular device in front of Ross Marvin is an artificial horizon.
It consists of a pan of mercury with glass sides. At high latitude it is
necessary to use this as the sun is so low and one can't always see the