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Antarctic Expedition Days 1-4, November 2013

November 15, 2013

I’ve been on the ship for four days now and am finally settling in. Crossing the Drake Passage was rough, the ship rocking back and forth violently all day and all night.  Meal times were the worst, as plates and cups and utensils would continually slide away if not held down. The seasick patch worked pretty well for me, although I did stay in bed as long as possible and not eat much. This morning things finally quieted down as we made our way through a beautiful channel full of sparkling icebergs and majestic glaciers on both sides. Here and there we would see crabeater seals lounging on an iceberg, penguins shooting up out of the sea like torpedoes, or huge whales surfacing right next to the ship.

Upon reaching Port Lockroy, a research station composed of a few small structures, we laid anchor and boarded zodiacs to go ashore. Gentoo penguins were everywhere, waddling around, sliding on the ice, or screaming their mating calls. I sat quietly on a rock and watched them go about their business like I wasn’t there. After that I stopped at the research station, which has a little store and place to mail letters. BBC was there filming a new show called “Penguin Post Office.”

 We were taken back to the ship for dinner and I went up on deck around 10PM to see the sunset. The play of pink and orange light off the towering peaks was one of the most spectacular things I have ever seen. We will stay anchored here tonight then continue south in the morning. I signed up for kayaking, snowshoeing, mountaineering, and camping, so I may get to do some of those tomorrow if the weather holds out. Some people in the group are actually going scuba diving!

Tags: antarctica, expedition, travel


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