PLA22-19, trip log, Antarctica

by Oceanwide Expeditions

Logbook

Day 1: Embarkation – Ushuaia, Argentina

Embarkation – Ushuaia, Argentina
Date: 10.11.2019
Position: 54°49‘S, 68°17‘W
Wind: NW 19 knots
Weather: sunny
Air Temperature: +18

So finally, the much-awaited departure day was upon us! We woke up in Ushuaia to glorious blue skies and sunshine, full of excitement and anticipation at the thought of boarding the MV Plancius for our forthcoming adventure - for many of us today signified the culmination of a lifelong dream!

Ushuaia marks the end of the road in Argentine Tierra del Fuego, but also the beginning – the beginning of once-in-a-lifetime adventure. During the summer this rapidly growing frontier town of 55,000 bustles with adventurous travellers. The duty-free port flourishes with tourism but also thrives on a sizeable crab fishery and a burgeoning electronics industry. Ushuaia which stands for “bay that penetrates to the west” in the indigenous Yaghan tongue, clearly benefits from its magnificent, yet remote setting.

It was a sunny afternoon as we made our way along the pier to the boat at 16:00, ready to board our new floating home for the next 10 days. We were greeted by members of our expedition staff who directed us to the reception to meet the hotel manager, Zsuzsanna, and her team who showed us to our rooms. There we found our luggage and in no time at all we settled in and started to explore our new surroundings.

At 17:00 we convened in the lounge on deck five to meet expedition leader Adam Turner, who welcomed us on board the ship. Chief Officer, Miia Holma then acquainted us with the safety features of the vessel and with the essential do’s and don’ts on board. Soon afterwards it was time for the mandatory safety drill and we gathered in the lounge, donned our big orange lifejackets. We then performed an abandon ship drill where we were escorted outside to take a look at the lifeboats, but were left confident that we would have no reason to do this again in the next 10 days!

Later in the evening we met in the lounge, for a welcome cocktail with our Captain, Evgeny Levakov. He spoke a few words and explained that we were welcome on the bridge during daylight hours, which is a great viewing platform for bird-watching and also the place to find out from officers on watch what life is like at sea.

Shortly afterwards we were invited to the dining room to enjoy the first of many delicious meals on board, prepared by head chef Heinz Hacker and his team. There was a real buzz in the dining room, as we got to know each other and talked about our hopes and aspirations for this voyage.

Our first evening was occupied with more exploration of the ship, adjusting to her movements and settling into our cabins before retiring for the night.

In the early hours of the morning we reached the entrance of the Beagle Channel and headed out into the open waters of the Drake Passage- our Antarctic adventure was now fully underway!

Day 2: At Sea in the Drake Passage

At Sea in the Drake Passage
Date: 11.11.2019
Position: 56 º 44.5’ S / 068 º 33.2 W
Wind: W 25 knots
Weather: sunny
Air Temperature: +4

This morning we woke up to the ship moving from side to side, which we were told were fairly “calm” waters for the Drake however it did get rougher throughout the day. Nevertheless, seasickness bags were found in the corridors, which some passengers made use of.

After breakfast, we met in the lounge for a mandatory safety briefing and our Expedition leader, Adam told us a little about the forthcoming voyage and introduced his team of guides and what each of their roles would be during the voyage. We were shown how to don the lifejackets for the zodiac cruises and how to get on and off the zodiacs down the gangway. Something we were looking forward to do after the long crossing. We were also called down to the boot room deck by deck to get our rubber boots for the landings.

In preparation for Antarctica we filed into the lounge to learn about environmental awareness and correct behaviour in Antarctica - no food ashore, clean your boots, and keep your distance from the penguins. The theory was followed by practice as we had to vacuum our outer clothes, backpacks and camera bags. Expedition staff members were on hand to help and advice how to rid our gear from seeds and dirt. With numerous vacuum cleaners going at once in the lounge it was noisy but fast.

During the day we enjoyed wonderful views of various sea birds as they accompanied the ship on its way, including Cape Petrels, Fulmars, Giant Petrels, Black-browed Albatross and the largest of all, the Wandering Albatross. Before dinner Sara gave a short recap on sea birds in a hope it would help us identify them in the forthcoming days, she used a length of rope as a visual aid to help emphasise the enormity of some of the species.

At dinner we celebrated a birthday and then settled back into our rooms to rest for another day on the Drake.

Day 3: At Sea in the Drake Passage

At Sea in the Drake Passage
Date: 12.11.2019
Position: 61º 06.2’ S/ 063 º 09.4’ W
Wind: NW 19 knots
Weather: cloudy
Air Temperature: 0

Our second day at sea started out with some movement of the ship, but as the day went on it appeared to improve. It was no Drake Lake, but was not as rough as the previous day.

We started the morning with a delicious buffet breakfast and then headed to the lounge where Sara talked to us about penguins. Her lecture was divided in to two parts, the first half explained a little about their biology and their cold weather adaptations, whilst the second half aimed to answer some frequently asked questions like how to you tell male and female penguins apart and how long do they live. Her enthusiasm for these little feathery creatures was infectious, making us even excited to see these birds in their natural habitat.

Before lunch Alexis and Jochem gathered the campers in the lounge to explain what to expect and how to prepare for a night of camping on the Antarctic peninsula. Another event we were eagerly looking forward to!

After lunch Jochem gave a lecture on the shelf ice of the Antarctic Peninsula. The satellite images of the collapse of the Larsen ice shelves was dramatic. So much change in such a short period of time. Of particular interest to the current position of the ship is that the ice bergs breaking off from the ice shelves tend to leave the Antarctic region through iceberg alley, which we are currently steaming down through. So, eyes open! We won’t yet sight iceberg A68a with a similar size as the state of Delaware, but other smaller bergs might well come into our views.

Chloe’s talk about plankton was fascinating. Who knew that the longest animal on earth is a 40m plankton called Praya dubia. It’s even longer than the blue whale. We learned about the differences between phytoplankton (which produces its food by photosynthesis) and zooplankton (which eats phytoplankton). Phytoplankton produces half the oxygen that is released into the atmosphere. Krill (which we learned are not the same as shrimp) are the base of the food chain. Birds eat 15-20 million tonnes of krill a year and whales eat 34-43 million tonnes per year. That’s a lot of krill! 90% of the crab eater seal’s diet is krill. Who would have thought with a name like that.

With good chances of seeing whales in the forthcoming days, Sara did a short lecture before dinner on how to identify different cetaceans species and encouraged us to get up early the following morning as we would be cruising the Gerlache Strait which is a renowned feeding area for many types of whale.

We all went to bed in anticipation of waking up to the icebergs that we had only seen on tv or read about online, but would soon witness with our own eyes.

Day 4: Cuverville Island and Danco Island

Cuverville Island and Danco Island
Date: 13.11.2019
Position: 64º 40.4’ S / 062º 37.9’ W
Wind: F.2 SW
Weather: overcast
Air Temperature: +5

This morning as we travelled through the Gerlache Strait, some of the early bird guests were treated to humpback and minke whale sightings. The icebergs also came into view for the first time and they did not disappoint.

While eating breakfast we gazed out the windows at the icebergs in every direction. After breakfast we prepared our equipment for our very first landing in Antarctica at Cuverville Island. The excitement was palpable as we waited to board the gangway to visit the site. Cuverville is regarded as having one of the largest rookeries of Gentoo penguins in the Antarctic Peninsula. The island was named after Admiral Cuverville, who helped finance Gerlache’s expeditions.

The morning was overcast, but the sun was trying to peek through the low lying clouds. At one point the peaks of the mountains were lit by the sun and looked spectacular. Conditions in the bay were smooth and the landing was easy, helped by the fact that the bay was full of icebergs. We spent the morning exploring the shore of the island between the various colonies, taking time to savour the feeling of being amongst so many thousands of relatively tame birds. Our expedition guides had set out a path for us to follow to the farther colonies. As we walked along our human path, the penguins waddled along their penguin highways.

Amidst the penguins was one sneaky brown skua sitting calmly, waiting for his opportunity to have some penguin breakfast.

We spent the morning watching the penguins as they called out to find their mates. Some were already successful in finding their match which allowed us to watch them mating. If only we could come back in a couple of months to see the hatchlings. In the midst of watching the mating rituals, we heard some noise in the distance, which turned out to be an avalanche of snow falling into the Errera channel. The vantage point from the top also allowed us to admire the bay of icebergs. One even started turn over. As we walked back down to the landing site, we wished we could toboggan on our bellies the way the penguins did.

Back on board we had a delicious buffet lunch and then it was time to get ready for the afternoon landing at Danco Island. The expedition team had brought snowshoes ashore for us. For people keen to hike, the snowshoes made the walk a bit easier through the wet snow. As we started our hike the snow flakes were falling and one lonely gentoo followed us thinking our path was a penguin highway. The fog started to roll in as we were almost at the top so we paused to take photos and admire the gentoos before returning to the beach where most of the group gathered to prepare for the Polar Plunge.

By this time, the snowfall was getting heavier and the wind was picking up. Everyone was eager to watch those brave souls strip down to their bathing suits and run into the freezing cold waters. Some even swam a little bit. Congratulations to everyone who was brave (or crazy) enough to take the dip.

Back on board it was time for our daily recap, where Sara spoke about the Gentoo penguins we had seen and Adam briefed us on the plans for tomorrow.

We celebrated another birthday at dinner and then it was time for the campers to get ready for a night off the ship. The staff went ashore first to prepare the site and by 21:30 all passengers were on shore and ready for a true Antarctic adventure!

Camping
How often does one get to sleep on an island in the Antarctic that might have never been set foot on by human beings before? Fantastic: water on all sides, Weddell seals and fur seals swimming around, Antarctic chicken curious into what these weird creatures are doing on their island and the odd penguin stopping by. A warming welcome speech by Alexis resulted in 12 people opting for sleeping in tents, with all others eager to dig and build a snow pit. By half past 11 everybody had found their sleeping spot. During the night, wind increased. For the tenting passengers this must have been a noisy experience, whereas the ‘diggers’ got rewarded with shielding for the hard work they had done before. A beautiful moonshine embraced our hearts at around wake up call (4 am) and by 5 am we warmly welcomed the Zodiacs that arrived to pick us up and bring us back on board.

Day 5: Neko Harbour and Useful Island

Neko Harbour and Useful Island
Date: 14.11.2019
Position: 64º 56.4’ S / 062º 32.2’ W
Wind: 3-5 knots
Weather: cloudy
Air Temperature: -3

The campers arrived back at the ship very early in the morning after a windy night and were eager for some hot coffee and breakfast. Our first landing for the day was Neko Harbour, our first continental landing.

Neko Harbour was discovered by Belgian explorer Adrien de Gerlache during his 1897―99 expedition and was named after a whaling boat, the Neko, which operated in the area between 1911 and 1924. The glacier behind Neko Harbour is extremely active, frequently calving large chunks of ice that splash thunderously into the bay. Hence the expedition team stressed the importance of staying off the beach and keeping on higher ground.

Keeping on the higher ground was not a problem for us because there were plenty of gentoo penguins to watch as we hiked to the summit. We followed a path marked by our expedition guides and admired the fresh snow where no one had set foot since the most recent fresh snowfall. The only footprints were those of the gentoos who had made paths down to the beach to get rocks for their nests. As we walked up the circular path we could see people high up in the distance. We were the only ship in the area, so we knew it had to be the rest of the passengers from the Plancius. Up we go! The hike up to the top had us huffing and puffing, but we knew the view would be worth the hike. Even from the lower levels we could see the icebergs drifting by in their different shapes and colours.

The view from the top was breathtaking. We had front row seats for the calving glaciers, which we could hear before we spotted which parts were falling into the sea. It was hard to imagine how high up we really were until we looked down at the penguins who looked like little ants. We sat in the fresh snow in silence and breathed deeply to take it all in. Even though this wasn’t our first landing, it still seemed surreal that we were actually in Antarctica, surrounded by such natural beauty.

The wind picked up while we were walking back down to the beach and our landing site was beginning to get surrounded by grounded ice. The tide was retreating which meant our zodiac drivers had to be extra cautious getting us all boarded and back to the ship. We would have loved to have stayed at the peak just a little bit longer, but we knew another delicious lunch awaited us on board.

For our second landing we visited Useful Island, aptly named for the good opportunity the whalers had to spot whales and seals from the summit where a large cylindrical orange beacon stands about 2m tall. The island was discovered by the Belgian Antarctic Expedition, 1897–99, under Adrien de Gerlache. As our zodiacs weaved around the icebergs we made a landing on a rocky slope and were greeted by a large Weddell Seal amongst the gentoo penguins. Who could resist that cute puppy dog face. We hiked the same 100m elevation change that the penguins hike to get a head start on finding the perfect nesting site. On our way up we saw two colonies of chinstrap penguins who had already claimed their nesting spots for the season. Their mating calls sounded quite different than the gentoos and we watched as some mating rituals took place. The summit was still covered in snow and were rewarded with a clear 360º degree view of the area. Calm seas, fluffy clouds, plenty of icebergs: who could ask for anything more.

At our evening recap, Chloe talked to us about the Antarctic bear. We were quite sure that we were nowhere near polar bears, but as we listened intently we learned that there is a small organism, less than a millimetre, called the Tardigrad which looks just like a bear. When threatened it curls into a ball in a tun state making it indestructible. They can be found as high as mountain tops, as deep as the ocean floor and have even been to space!

Before dinner Adam briefed us for the following day and told us that the ice was so thick in the area that the Port Lockroy staff hadn’t been able to get to the site. If the staff couldn’t get there, then we definitely wouldn’t make it through the ice either. So, as we do in Antarctica, we changed our plans due to weather and we’d visit Damoy Point as our first landing tomorrow. Everyone made their way to the dining lounge for another delicious meal before the campers headed out for a night on the white continent.

Camping
A group of 33 people from different parts of this planet had an important meeting in a camping site in an unusual place. They came from Canada; North, East, South and Central USA; The Netherlands, India, Spain, UK and Argentina to have this special time at Stoney Point, one of the most beautiful places close to Paradise Bay, Antarctica.

We started with a Zodiac cruising from the Vessel, passing through growlers of ice that a recent calving glacier spread on the area. It was snowing lightly, with a sweet breeze from the east. After a safety briefing everybody went to find a place to dig their ice grave to pass the night under the stars in one of the coldest places in the world. Two hours later everybody was ready to sleep, the guides checked one by one and the silence become the main feeling of the polar night.

We could hear some thunders in the distance away from the calving glaciers, the currents driving big bergs, collapsing in between. Silence again. In the distance there were some Gentoes singing, two Giant Petrels passing by, a curious Sheathbill jumping from one trench to another looking for something special to steal.

The time passed quickly. After six and a half hours we woke up at 4:45 am to pack all our equipment to go back to the mothership. The zodiacs had a challenging task of navigating the icebergs that had drifted into our campsite over the night, but we arrived safely back to our beloved M/V Plancius where we took hot showers and enjoyed a full breakfast.

Happy faces, lots of smiles, people laughing, that’s what it’s all about….to have fun.

Day 6: Lemaire Channel and Port Charcot

Lemaire Channel and Port Charcot
Date: 15.11.2019
Position: 64º 57.9’S / 063º 30.7’ W
Wind: F.3 E
Weather: snowing
Air Temperature: -2

The second group of campers woke up early, dusted the fresh snow off their bivvy bags, and back to the ship to dry their gear and then fill their bellies with another yummy buffet breakfast. The dining room was abuzz with all the excitement from the night before where guests shared their photos with those who had stayed on board. During breakfast we were advised that we’d arrive at Damoy Point around 10 am. As the ship got underway the ice in the area thickened making it less likely for us to make a landing. While we were all looking forward to more hikes and views, we were confident the Captain and Expedition Staff would find a suitable alternative.

Given we couldn’t do a morning landing, the Captain took the ship through the Lemaire Channel which cuts between the Antarctic Peninsula and Booth Island. It was ice free, which is a rarety this early in the season. We all got bundled up to go outside on the decks to admire the mountains on each side. No one wanted to blink for fear of missing such spectacular views. In the distance we could see penguin colonies, but the most impressive were the jagged cliffs and icebergs strewn across the channel. The views were so impressive that we almost didn’t want to go back inside for lunch.

Our afternoon landing was at Port Charcot, where we had the option to hike in two directions. One direction allowed us to view a number of gentoo colonies and the other was a hike to the top where Charcot’s monument sits. The island was discovered on January 11, 1910 by the French Antarctic Expedition under Jean-Baptiste Charcot who named the area after his father. Back down at the beach one of the Expedition Staff pointed out what appeared to be a hybrid penguin: a mix between a Chinstrap and an Adelie. We knew this must have been a pretty big deal because all of our expedition guides were excited to see it.

Once back on board the ship, Adam gave us some history of Charcot’s travels and Jochem explained why ice is blue. We enjoyed both re-caps, but we were looking forward to the special BBQ on the back deck as smells of the BBQ and garlic wafted throughout the ship. There was a light snowfall, but that didn’t stop us from sitting outside to enjoy the various salads, meats, corn on the cob and last but not least, the mulled wine. The ship was surrounded by icebergs. It was a 5-star view at this restaurant. Once we couldn’t eat anything more, we danced the night away on the back deck with the Staff and Crew. A great time was had by all!

Day 7: Orne Harbour and Wilhemina Bay zodiac cruise

Orne Harbour and Wilhemina Bay zodiac cruise
Date: 16.11.2019
Position: 64º 37.8’ S / 062º 32.6’ W
Wind: F.2 NW
Weather: snowing
Air Temperature: -1

Orne Harbour is a small cove, 1 mile wide which indents the west coast of Graham Land, 2 miles south west of Cape Anna. The cove was discovered by the Belgian Antarctic Expedition under command of Gelache in 1898. The name Orne Harbor was probably in use by Norwegian whalers, because it was used by Scottish geologist David Ferguson following his geologic reconnaissance of this area aboard the whaler Hanka in 1913. The site is dominated by Spigot Point, a sharp 289m above sea level sharp, ice corniced peak. We took a steep hike to the peak using the switchback path our guides had laid out with snowshoes and poles. It was important to stay on the path as this area has some crevasses. At the peak were lots of chinstrap penguins, some mating and some still looking for their mates. Despite overcast skies, the view from the top was breathtaking.

The way down was much easier than the way up, as we slid down on our bums. Weeeeee! This is what it’s like to feel like a six-year old kid again. Quite a few guests did the trek back to the top for more than one go. Each slide down the hill allowed guests to perfect their technique. Who needs a gym membership when you’ve got the Orne Harbour hike and slide. We definitely worked up an appetite and earned our lunch on that landing.

We had a few hours to digest another delicious meal and then we headed out on the zodiacs for our first official zodiac cruise. As soon as we got into the zodiacs two humpbacks appeared at the rear of Plancius. They were quite curious and approached our boats to see what was going on, raising their heads and blowing. As they descended back into the deep we could see the beautiful white and blue outlines of their pectoral finds beneath the boat. What a pleasant surprise as we were not expecting to see them here. After they left us, we navigated through the icebergs over to the Governoren ship which ran aground after a fire in 1915. All 85 crew on board survived.

To the bow of the wreck on the ice were four Weddell seals. One slide into the water and we could see a pup hiding behind a ridge of ice. As we cruised out of the bay to admire the icebergs, we came across some crabeater seals laying on a large flat iceberg. We sat in silence watching a young pup feed from its mother.

After cruising around more icebergs in all shapes, sizes and colours, we headed back to Plancius where Zsuzsanna was waiting for us with spiked hot chocolate and whip cream. We all toasted the successful outing.

At recap Adam told us the plan for the following day: a possible landing at Baily Head to see the largest chinstrap penguin colony. There was one catch: our wake-up call would be 5 am due to the weather conditions. We were game for the early wake-up for the chance to see chinstraps. We enjoyed yet another delicious dinner and made our way to bed for the early morning.

Day 8: Telefon Bay, Deception Island and Half Moon Island

Telefon Bay, Deception Island and Half Moon Island
Date: 17.11.2019
Position: 62º 55.5’ S / 060º 38.7’ W
Wind: 10 knots
Weather: foggy
Air Temperature: +2

As our alarms went off at 5 am we looked out our portholes at the fog surrounding the ship. We were eagerly anticipating being able to land at Baily Head, but our guides took a zodiac out on a scouting mission and they came back with news that the swells were too high to land. We were looking forward to what might be on the other side of the mist, but knew that safety comes first. It also gave us a couple more hours to sleep before our first regular landing of the day.

Our landing at Telefon Bay was a completely different sight than we had previously seen this trip. The beach was black volcanic rock, which juxtaposed nicely against the white snow. A couple of Weddell and Elephant seals were lounging around the beach before we started our walk. The weather was still very foggy which made it difficult to see the poles our guides had laid out, but there were staff at regular intervals to show us the way.

We hiked to the top of Bare Rock for a view of the caldera. The weather changed a few times while at the summit. At one point the wind blew all the fog away and we could see blue skies and the dramatic volcanic landscape beneath us.

After lunch we had our final landing of the trip. Despite rain and wind, we knew this was the last time we’d have the chance to leave the ship before two more days on the Drake passage. On Half Moon island we were surprised to see so much pink penguin poop, but that didn’t stop us from walking about. No sitting in the snow for this landing. We stood along the penguin highway as the chinstraps made their way from the sea. Around the corner from our landing site, a Weddell seal laid in the snow and resembled the rock not too far from it. We gave it a wide berth on each side as it slowly made its way to sea. Meanwhile the penguins traversed the rocky beach. As the winds picked up, our guides helped us get back into the zodiacs so we could get back to the ship for Happy Hour.

Day 9: At Sea in the Drake Passage

At Sea in the Drake Passage
Date: 18.11.2019
Position: 60 º 11.6’ S / 061 º 50.5’ W
Wind: SW 29 knots
Weather: overcast
Air Temperature: 0

This morning’s wake-up call was at 8 am. We enjoyed a leisurely breakfast since we knew we didn’t have to get dressed in our layers for a landing or zodiac cruise. The talk around the dining lounge was whether we’d have a Drake Lake or a Drake Snake. Only time would tell. The winds were quite strong early in the day, but as the day went on the Plancius seemed to be rocking less and less. The staff had a number of lectures planned for us to keep us occupied. Daniel spoke about the behind the scenes of the ship. Chloe gave a lecture on diving in Antarctica. Jerry spoke about some of the whales we had seen and advised us that there are sometimes blue whales in the area.

For those who decided to go outside on deck, there were sightings of a variety of albatross (light mantled, grey headed and wandering), as well as black-browed petrels and prions. At re-cap, Sara told us about some superstitions at sea. We’d been pretty lucky on this voyage, so we were certain no one had broken any of them.

Day 10: At Sea in the Drake Passage

At Sea in the Drake Passage
Date: 19.11.2019
Position: 56º 09.8’ S / 065º 51.0 W
Wind: F.3 NNW
Weather: partly cloudy
Air Temperature: +9

This morning we woke up to what is probably the closest thing to the Drake Lake we had heard about. It meant we got a great sleep the night before and could relax without worrying about seasickness. During our morning lecture we listened to Sara tell us about Antarctic Seals. The only one we hadn’t seen was the leopard seal. This gave us one more excuse to come back to this beautiful continent.

After returning our boots and rental gear to the boot room we enjoyed lunch in the dining room when Adam came over the speaker system to tell us that we were approaching Cape Horn. Cape Horn marks the northern boundary of the Drake Passage and is where the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans meet. The ship needed special permission from the Chilean authorities, which was granted. The closest we were allowed to approach was 3 nautical miles. After a day and a half in the Drake, we could finally see land again. The fog and mist cleared allowing us a beautiful view of the cliffs covered in green. Those with binoculars could make out the church and the lighthouse.

Shortly after turning around at Cape Horn, we had some lectures on Citizen Science. Sara told us how we could get involved with counting penguins at www.penguinmap.com and www.penguinwatch.org. Jochem told us about mapping glaciers and ice at www.recognice.org and Chloe told us about www.happywhale.com where we could upload any fluke or dorsal fin photos we took on our trip and then follow the whale around the world. Alexis gave us an interesting lecture about the Yamanas people.

When 6 pm rolled around we were ready in the lounge for Captain’s cocktails. Adam brought his expedition staff to the front to thank them for their hard work this week and we barely recognized some of them since they were dressed in regular clothes for the occasion. Everyone enjoyed a glass of bubbly and toasted the Captain whose expertise we appreciated. It can’t be easy to navigate in such harsh conditions. We toasted Adam for his well thought out itinerary and the alternate weather plans worked out to be a blast. We couldn’t have asked for a better voyage. The slideshow that Sara had put together captured all the highlights of this special trip.

We enjoyed one last dinner in the lounge and celebrated two more birthdays. Zsuzsanna introduced the galley crew who had been preparing all the delicious meals over the past week and a half, as well as the hotel and cleaning staff. There is so much work that goes on behind the scenes when we were out on our landings that we gave everyone a loud round of applause. After we finished our bread pudding, some of us went to the lounge to enjoy our last hours socializing and some of us retired to our rooms to pack. We didn’t want the trip to end, but as they say: all good things must come to an end.

Day 11: Disembarkation Ushuaia

Disembarkation Ushuaia
Date: 20.11.2019
Position: 54°49‘S, 68°17‘W
Wind: ESE 23 knots
Weather: overcast
Air Temperature: 7

We were woken by the last wake-up call from our Expedition Leader Adam and got ready to disembark for the final time. We didn’t have to tap our room cards, there was no zodiac ride ashore and it was a dry landing. The last 11 days have taken us on a remarkable journey into Antarctica and allowed us a glimpse of life in these remote and sometimes inhospitable places. We will all have different memories of our trip but whatever the memories, whether it was our first penguin siting, hiking in snowshoes, the stunning icebergs, massive cliffs in the Lemaire Channel or making new friends, they are memories that will stay with us for the rest of our lives.

Details

Tripcode: PLA22-19
Dates: 10 Nov – 20 Nov, 2019
Duration: 10 nights
Ship: m/v Plancius
Embark: Ushuaia
Disembark: Ushuaia

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The ice-strengthened vessel Plancius is an ideal vessel for polar expedition cruises in the Arctic and Antarctic.

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