Matt & Emmy in Antarctica & Easter Island travel blog


We are now on our way back to Ushuaia, leaving the Antarctic Peninsula behind. To get back to South America, we have to sail for about two days north, across the Drake Passage. The oceans in this area have some of the strongest sustained winds in the world, because there is no land anywhere at these latitudes to slow the wind diwn. The latitudes here are known as the "screaming sixties," the "furious fifties" and the "roaring forties." Our passage began today and was not too bad - the wind speeds were high - sustained speeds in the 30 knot range, but the ship rode it quite well. The day was filled with talks and lectures on what we had seen. Also, a photo contest was announced, to be judged by the National Geographic Photographer on the trip, Chris Ranier. We submitted 3 pictures I took. Otherwise, we rested today, since the pace of the previous few days had been pretty busy, with landings, zodiac rides, and cocktail parties each evening with the staff (and a few die hard guests, but not too many). One highlight of the day occurred at an open forum on tourism's impact on the environment in the Antarctic. One of the staff members, Shaun Powell, a really nice guy, was trying to make a point about how most current travelers to the Antarctic are affluent and little bit older, but he unfortunately referred to the guests as being "in the twilight of your years." Needless to say, this did not go over well, but those of us not in the twilight of our years found it pretty hysterical, We were informed that his new radio call sign would be "Twilight." (Shaun later apologized for his unfortunate choice of words - he clearly did not mean to offend anyone). Emmy and I now consider ourselves to have turned the corner to the twilight of our years as well.



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