Antarctica Journals

Beyond the End of the World

A December 2005 trip to Antarctica by globalroamer

Lamaire Channel Photo, More Photos
Quote: Ushuaia is "el fin del mundo," or "the end of the world." Continuing south to Antarctica takes you over the edge.
Lamaire Channel Photo,
We awoke each morning to Dutch's (our Australian expedition leader) gentle prodding to get out of bed because there was something amazing to look at outside. This morning we threw on some clothes and went out on to the bow, where the crew was serving hot chocolate and pastries.The ship was moving (barely) down the Lemaire Channel. Looking at the end of the channel, it seemed unbelievable that the ship could fit through it. Small icebergs bobbed on the surface of the water. Rocky black mountains reached up on either side of the ship, creating an unusual and beautiful black, white, and blue palette. We reluctantly left the stunning views to heed the call to breakfast.After breakfast...Read More
Departing Ushuaia Photo,
Our cruise to the Antarctic Peninsula departed from Ushuaia, Argentina. We only spent one day there. I wanted to make sure that we had enough time to make the ship's departure, even if there were flight delays. You can't catch up with ships headed south from Ushuaia. Ushuaia is a small city, the southern-most city in the world. They market it as "the end of the world", and it certainly feels remote. Most people go there to hike, take day cruises, or for the train that goes up to a glacier. We simply hung out around town, went to the small but worthwhile Museo del Fin del Mundo (Museum of the End of the World). If you do go to Ushuaia, you should first read Evolution's Captain by Pet...Read More

Part 3 - Peterman and Pleneau Islands

Best Of IgoUgo


Icebergs Photo,
We made two stops on the following day, Peterman Island and Pleneau Island. Both were home to large penguin colonies. The penguins were nesting and several chicks had recently hatched. The penguin rookeries stink of poop, though you get used to it after a while. They are also noisy, busy places as the birds are constantly calling and challenging each other. Peterman Island is apparently a popluar stop for cruises like ours, though we did not see any other ships while we were there. We landed at Port Circumcision. Here there is a refuge hut for use in an emergency, and a cross in memory of three men who died in 1982 while attempting to cross the sea ice back to Faraday (now Vernadsky) Stati...Read More