This is the first section of the book that low morale is a constant throughout all of the chapters. The beginning of chapter one sets the mood pretty well. "Many of them, it seemed, finally grasped for the first time just how desperate things really were." (pg. 100) The men even lost the motivation to try to see the brighter side of everything. "Many of them made a sincere effort to be cheerful, but without much success." (pg. 101) I don't think the men lost their interest in the adventure but at this point they are almost out of food and that is all each of them can focus on. Their rations are significantly slashed and this makes most of the men resentful towards Shackleton for not securing game when it was available. The men's motivation is definitely at an all time low. They are wet and hungry and incredibly miserable. Multiple arguements break out due to all the hostility and distaste for their current situation. For the first half of the section the men seem to just be waiting around for their next move. This makes them all anxious and they are forced to spend their days trying to just pass the time. The men are also starting to feel more and more cut off from the rest of the world. The constant whiteness of their surroundings has lowered their motivation and hopes significantly.
It is not until chapter 5 that the men's food situation begins to improve. Wild had managed to shot and kill a snow leopard, providing the men with an astounding 1,000 pounds of meat and blubber. This brightens the men's spirits a bit. With their bellies full the men are content. Good news also comes when the men spot land and figure out that they are only 52 miles away from Clarence Island. This excitement is soon dwindled when the floe that they had set their camp on begins to split, leaving them with only 200 yards of living space. At the end of chapter 6 the floe once again splits and Shackleton gives the order to prepare the three boats to launch. There is not much hope in this move. The men are well aware that they cannot stay in their camp but the ice already appears to be closing in once they launch the boats.