'Tues. 6 June Scott's birthday, for which the cook made a magnificent cake and I painted his sledge flag and a Union Jack, and all our flags were hung around the hut. The blizzard stopped about noon - brilliant moon all the afternoon and night. Up the Ramp and got some moonlight sketches. Ponting making fine photographs by flashlight. All day painting, except for interruptions which are numerous.' (H.G.R.King (ed.), Edward Wilson 'Diary of the Terra Nova Expedition To the Antarctic 1910-1912, New York, 1972, p.133).
Wilson paints Bowers taking readings from Simpson's ramp thermometer on the slopes of Mt Erebus just above the hut at Cape Evans on 6 June 1911. Ponting's flashlight photograph ('Dr. Wilson and Lieut. Bowers reading the ramp thermometer in the winter night, -40° Fahr.') recorded a similar scene, with Wilson taking down Bowers' readings (Scott's Last Expedtion, I, facing p.321).
Wilson and Bowers made routine walks out to the meteorological screens in the vicinity of the hut, braving the elements through the midwinter of 1911. The diminuitive Bowers, stores officer of the shore party at Cape Evans, who would set off with Wilson and Cherry-Garrard on the famous Winter Journey to Cape Crozier at the end of June 1911, and who would perish with Wilson and Scott on the Barrier the following year, was generally acknowledged to be the toughest of all the characters on the expedition. He was a veteran of the merchant service, and latterly the Royal Indian Marine, where he was serving on a gunboat on the Irrawaddy: 'Thence he came to us. It is at any rate a curious fact, and it may be a significant one, that Bowers, who enjoyed a greater resistance to cold than any man on this expedition, joined it direct from one of the hottest places on the globe. ...To those accustomed to judge men by the standards of their fashionable and corseted drawing-rooms Bowers appeared crude. 'You couldn't kill that man if you took a pole-axe to him,' was the comment of a New Zealander at a dance at Christchurch. ...There was nothing subtle about him. He was transparently simple, straightforward and unselfish. His capacity for work was prodigious, and when his own work happened to take less than his full time he characteristically found activity in serving a scientist or exercising an animal. So he used to help send up balloons with self-recording instruments attached to them... He was responsible for putting up three outlying meteorological screens and read them more often than anybody else.' (A.G.B. Cherry-Garrard, The Worst Journey in the World, London, 1994 edition, pp. 213-15).