Hi Everyone -
We have officially left Antarctica and are almost back to Argentina. Luckily the Drake Passage was very calm which was nice.
This morning we went by Cape Horn which is the very bottom tip of South America and many, many ships have sunk there because of the crazy currents. Our boat was certainly bouncing around as we approached. We took a picture in front of it when the fog lifted. Sort of ironic but the lady who took the photo is the owner of the company Patagonia and she lives in Chile. She and her husband have been buying thousands of acres of land to turn into national parks – how cool is that? She even has a book coming out all about it!
We also went to an extremely interesting lecture on global climate change and how it’s affecting the glaciers and ice around the world. We first hand saw how quickly the glaciers in Antarctica were calving and melting and it is sadly happening faster and faster each year. It’s actually quite mind-blowing and if you haven’t seen the short documentary Chasing Ice it will open your eyes to everything… definitely worthwhile.
Tonight we land back in Argentina and then tomorrow morning we leave the boat and head all the way back home to the USA. Usually leaving these adventures is really hard but knowing Christmas is just around the corner makes it a little easier this time
Thank you to everyone for following and I hope you have enjoyed a little behind the scenes of this incredible great expedition.
Hi Everyone -
Today was another jam packed adventure here in Antarctica and it started with a kayaking ride through the bay this morning! Lizzy and I set out on a small two person kayak into a relatively flat bay full of sea ice and glaciers; of course we had our handy beach ball in tow. Approaching various icebergs we would toss the ball out and snap shots and then wheel it back in like a fishing line. We also got to play with the Go Pro camera filming underwater at some of the icebergs from below! After the adventure came to an end we set off onto a beach with a Gentoo Penguin colony. I took the liberty of bringing my beach umbrella and a towel and we found an amazing spot out on the ice to set up a great shot which I will share with you at another time (haven’t had a chance to get it off my computer yet!). The penguins were running around like crazy so Lizzy got some more great Go Pro and we enjoyed ourselves up until we got ino some deep water and our boots filled up with freezing icy water! Luckily we were headed back to shore not much longer so we stuck it out and boy was it worth it.
Back on board the captain had mulled wine and ginger snaps for us out on the bow and we set sail with the warm treat in hand down the La Mare channel. Blowing through ice we made it through the narrow channel with time to spare and suddenly came to an open bay where we spotted a pod of 25-30 killer whales! It was such a site to see since they are the TOP predator on earth. We also have two killer whale experts on board the boat with us who are funded to be here by National geographic and they have been going us presentations on their studies each night. In fact they also tagged one today for more of the studies they are doing which is very interesting. Turns out this pod of whales we saw are the ones from the feature film Frozen Planet! Yes, movie star whales
Lizzy and I had a nice dinner before heading out to the front of the boat to take in the sunny sights of the channel. The water is reflecting the steep glacial slopes around it and it’s just amazing. Too bad it’s 11pm and we need to go to bed because you could just stay up all night here.
Oh and lastly we saw a glacier the size of a sky scraper fall into the bay today… a site we will never forget!
Hi Everyone -
Happy Thursday! I hope everyone is in the Christmas spirit – there aren’t any trees here in Antarctica but we’ve been making ginger bread cookies and ginger bread houses to celebrate as we near December 25th.
Today was, by far, the most beautiful day we’ve had here in Antarctica. The sun was shining and the glaciers and icebergs have been lit up and glistening on the crystal blue water. We started the day early and headed to the old British base Port Lockroy which was built in the 40′s here in Antarctica after WWII. The port was absolutely fascinating. Four women from Britain, France, the US and Australia lived there for 4 months overseeing the port and it is actually an operating post office! There was also a woman there from BBC / PBS filming a penguin documentary called Post Office Penguins which will be coming out about this time next year – it was a lot of fun chatting with her. The port has been restored to look and feel exactly like it use to back in the 50′s and it was such a trip to walk through and see what it would have been like to be stationed there 60 years ago.
After our landing we shot a few more images with a beach chair and then took off in the Zodiac to photograph some images with two beach balls, the snorkel mask and the stanchions. It was quite tricky because we were placing the items on floating ice in the bay and if you can imagine, it’s very unstable and can break apart at any time. Luckily this didn’t happen! We snapped some wonderful last shots and then headed back to the boat for lunch. It was sad that our shoot has come to an end but we have accomplished so many wonderful shots and I hope to come back to do more one day!
In the evening we went to the most beautiful place we’ve seen so far – Paradise Bay. The sun was out and hardly a cloud in the sky – photographs just don’t do this place justice. If you can imagine being completely surrounded by white glaciers that look like whipped meringue in a bay dotted with floating icebergs and sea ice in crystal blue water and a piercing blue sky above you; it was an incredible end to our time here in Antarctica. However, our trip is far from over as we have two days crossing the Drake Passage ahead of us and then a day in Argentina. We have lots more to share and can’t wait to start editing to bring this series to life!