Posted by: tim ellis | October 9, 2005

Antarctica – Thursday 25th November, 2004

It’s definitely colder this morning even though we have moved north to the South Shetland Islands- there is snow on the deck! It is a chilly -2C and the wind is gusting at around 40 – 45 knots which puts our planned landing at Hannah Point in jepardy. Fortunately the decision is made to go ahead and we take a walk through Gentoo and Chinstrap Penguins and basking Elephant Seal. There are also the odd Macaroni Penguins amongst the chinstrap. There are a collection of fossils and bones on the beach – including a minke whale skull. We also find krill and arthropods on the beach and malachite amongst the stones.

We leave Livingston Island for Deception Island – a natural harbour ‘hidden’ inside a volcano. As we enter through ‘Neptune’s Bellows’ it is snowing – to the excitement of the Philippino bar staff who are busy taking photos of each other on the pool deck with the mountains behind.

We go ashore to an abandoned whaleing station where Larry has members of the team digging a hot pool. We walk along the beach to Neptunes Window but there is not much wildlife – especially by previous landings. Brown Skua, a few Gentoo Penguins, a baby Elephant Seal and a couple of Weddell Seal that are just entering the water as we approach -obviously camera shy!

Back at the landing site the bathing pool is proving very popular with passengers and crew alike. Spook decides to join them and goes off to change. While he is gone the sea breaks through the perimiter wall and lets the cold water in. By the time he returns the pool is empty.





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