Dawn of the Legend
25 April 1915
Battle for the ridges
After clambering from their boats, the Australians gathered themselves below the cliffs. Most began scrambling up the slopes through the scrub. It was confusing and dangerous. Some men penetrated further that day than anyone would for the rest of the campaign, only to be cut off, surrounded, and killed, or forced back. Just a few reached the original objective on the third ridge, but they could not hold on.
By mid-morning the Turks had rushed up reinforcements. They had orders to fight to the death. The Turks met the Australians on the ridges and fierce fighting followed, often at close range and sometimes with bayonets. Many positions were lost to these heavy enemy counter-attacks. The Turks held the main ridge and the heights, while the ANZACs clung to a narrow three-kilometre strip of hills overlooking their landing beaches. The front line did not change much for the next eight months.
[Main force] troops went straight into the firing line, where the Turks were already attacking in force too great to allow the digging of trenches. The only possibility was to hold on in the scrub on the line they wished to hold and dig in after dark.