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Antarctic Expedition Day 7

November 18, 2013

The winds picked up to 37 knots this morning, so we headed back north in search of a safe anchorage. In the early evening we made an unscheduled stop at Deception Island, one of the only places in the world where you can sail into an active volcano. The island is shaped like a donut, with a narrow passage, called Neptune’s Bellows, used to enter the interior. Within the island we are protected from the 15 meter swells outside, but it is still windy and snowing.

 Inside the island, the sea ice had built up to form a sheet over the ocean, and groups of crabeater seals could be seen frolicking at the edge  and diving beneath it. Our icebreaker ship was able to push through and lodge itself within the ice, and we got a big surprise when they let us disembark to walk on the sheet of sea ice. It was a pure white magical landscape, with some dark mountains looming in the distance, barely visible through the snow storm.  I didn’t stay out too long, as the ice could crack at any moment, and I am now safely back on board the ship. We will try to make a final landing in the South Shetland Islands tomorrow if the weather is good, and then we will head back across the Drake Passage back to Ushuaia.

Tags: antarctica, expedition, voyage

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