We were on our way north, making the long return journey from south of the Antarctic Circle to our final destination in Ushuaia, Argentina. The captain announced that we would soon be going through the Lemaire Channel, a narrow passage strait in northern Antarctica framed by steep cliffs and icebergs.
Everyone aboard ship was invited on deck and to the bridge to appreciate the view. One of the benefits of our vessel, the G Adventures MS Expedition, was an “open bridge” policy that allowed, within reason and safety, visits with the captain and his crew during our journey. Once on the bridge, we took in the instrument panel, complete with various monitors, scopes and blinking bits. It didn’t take long to determine that the instruments indicated there was a lot more to the icebergs underwater than above the surface. Continue Reading »
We’ve spent hours sharing highlights of our Antarctica experience with family, friends and fellow travelers. The result: we get excited, they get excited. And rightfully so — Antarctica is a special place and our experience there was truly memorable in so many dimensions.
Inspired by all of these conversations ourselves, we decided to dabble in a different medium, the audio slideshow, to relate our Antarctica experience in a different way. Continue Reading »
I believe penguins are the answer to world peace.
– Heidi Krajewsky, resident ornithologist (bird gal) aboard the MS Expedition to Antarctica
Our challenge to you: read this, watch the slideshow, check out the video — and maintain a straight face. Continue Reading »
Life’s journeys play host to the constant battle of expectations and delivery. Antarctica was no different except that our expectations of it were within inches of the stratosphere given the mystique and the cost of the trip. However, we did not carry a must-see checklist outlining this bit of wildlife or that bit of landscape, this scene or that moment. We could not really quantify our desires — we had simply hoped to be overwhelmed.
Then, on that first Antarctic morning, we stepped foot off the gangway of the MS Expedition and into a zodiac. It was clear that we were about to be blown away — but in a way that none of us had quite expected.
Continue Reading »
The MS Expedition, our ship to Antarctica, docked in Ushuaia, Argentina before departure.
As a teacup and breakfast plate sailed by Wednesday morning, followed by a fellow passenger or two, it again occurred to me that no story of a destination is complete without recounting the process of getting there.
A journey to Antarctica from Tierra del Fuego, the southernmost point of South America requires crossing the Drake Passage, an infamous body of water that serves as a rite of passage for those who seek the seventh continent. The seas are notoriously some of the roughest in the world. To wit, one reader pointed out before we departed, “The Drake Passage can be brutal. I was bed-ridden for 4 days.”
Hard to believe, perhaps, until you experience it first-hand. Continue Reading »