Our plane arrives in Ushuaia ….
And our luggage is ready for loading …
A 3 1/2 hour flight from Ushuaia to Buenos Aires … a layover in Buenos Aires … a 9 hour flight to Miami and then our flight to Detroit …. a lot of time to process the once in a lifetime adventure …. the memories will live on forever. (More Antarctica pictures will be added as I have time to go through them.)
Dolphin Gull, Leucophaeus scoresbii, along the shore in Ushuaia … notice the very bright orange bill, legs and feet.
Ushuaia … the End of the World…
(is Beginning of Everything was added on a wall in Ushuaia)
Ushuaia, Argentina at approximately 6:50 a.m. January 27, 2012.
In addition to being a vacation destination for local and international tourists, Ushuaia is also the key access point to the Southern Ocean, including subantarctic islands. Its commercial pier is the major port of departure in the world for tourist and scientific expeditions to the Antarctic Peninsula. Passenger and freight lines provide regularly scheduled services between Ushuaia and all local seaports and settlements.
As we disembark the cleaning of the National Geographic Explorer begins.
Our head chef grills the meat for our sandwiches de miga which is a popular food item in Argentina consumed mainly at parties. Though it had rained earlier it stopped long enough for us to have a ‘farewell tea’ on the ‘sun deck’ of the National Geographic Explorer our last day aboard.
The sandwiches are put together ….
And our head bartender pours the wine.
Mirror mirror on the pond … who’s the fairest penguin of them all…
Cape Horn behind me … an area where many ships sank and a lot of people lost their lives.
We docked in Ushuaia at approximately 9:15 p.m. tonight. The Captain informed us that we went 2230 nautical miles, used 4,000 gals. of fuel per day and consumed 16,000 gals. of fresh water. More trip pictures will follow when I can get to the Internet again.
At sea all day yesterday and will be again today … there were several interesting talks yesterday and it was also a time to relax and process all that I saw and experienced. Temperature was about 38 degrees yesterday and feels about the same this morning if not a degree or two warmer.
A Gentoo penquin and chick chillin’ out in the snow a few days ago.
Dallmann Bay 8:304 p.m. last night … headed north to the Drake Passage.
After the ‘Polar Plunge’ yesterday the excitement continued as killer whales were spotted off the bow of our ship. The whale reseachers went out in a zodiac and were able to tag 2 whales … the data they have received already will be very helpful. Later in the evening several humpback whales hung around for sometime.
Whale researcher Dr. John Durban (standing in zodiac) was able to tag this killer whale with his cross bow. The tag is black so the whales won’t try to take it out and will stay in the whale for a month or two.
Two of the three humpbacks that swam along side our ship for quite awhile.
Yesterday Mary and I joined several others for the Antarctic Polar Plunge in Dahlman Bay. The crew put out a platform between 2 zodiacs along the side of the ship for us to either walk off of and/or jump/dive. Mary dove … I jumped. The water temperature is approximately 30 degrees. Your body is numb in about 9 seconds so the water doesn’t feel very cold but the wind when we got out was another ‘story’.