In 1819, Edward Parry, a young navel officer, was given command of two ships, the Hecla and Gripper, with instructions to find a sea route to the Pole. He was defeated by the ice but his ships, nevertheless, were the first to sail north of the Magnetic Pole – then 71°N. 96°W. As they did so Parry was delighted to see his compass needle pointing south, for this meant that a prize of £5,000 had been won by the two ships. After two more voyages to the Arctic, Parry put forward an exceptionally daring plan to try and reach the North Pole by traveling overland – something that had never been tried before. He sailed for the Arctic in the Hecla and after anchoring in Spitsbergen, and some of his men set off in two amphibious sledges that had been specially built for the venture. They were called Enterprise and Endeavour and were drawn by reindeer. The ground became so broken, however, that the animals were abandoned and the party had to drag the sledges. They failed in their attempt to reach the Pole but managed to get closer to it than anyone else had succeeded in doing up to that time. Parry also proved that it was possible to winter in the Arctic regions and return with a crew in robust health and good spirits.