One Million steps and few thousand more travel blog

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Replica of Shackletons converted life raft that carried 7 men to safety

Flight tickets to Antarctica


Happy New Year and thanks to everyone that sent us greetings, it meant a lot. We landed yesterday back from Antarctica into Punta Arenas, but the wifi there is suspect at best and even worst with 120 people from around the world trying to email, post and phone relatives. So we did the next best thing went out had another fantastic Black Hake meal and went to bed to fly to Pueto Vadas which is where I am now trying to catch up on the past mind blowing, wonderous, awe inspiring, majestic and breathtaking places on the planet.

So let's start at the very beginning, on Wednesday 27th December 2017, we had returned to Punta Arenas and booked in the Copos del Hornes Hotel with all the other guests ( approx 60% Chinese, 35% American,s and 2 Russians and 2 Brits) on Ocean Nova a ship with 48 cabins.for the trip. We were briefed, fitted out for artic gear and boots, then fed and watered in the Jose Nuegeria, the palace we had stayed in previously.

We were then briefed that the flight had a possibility of maybe taking off tomorrow afternoon as the weather was poor. ( note at the time the previous trip had been delayed by 2 days, unbeknown to us at the time)

Note we had not considered the possibility of a flight not getting in as opposed to have to have a 2 day crossing of the Drakes passage. So I was absolutely devastate, besides myself with worry, stress and panic attacks. How could we be so near and possibly not get there. (King George Island is approximately 1000km from Punta Arenas.

So next day Thursday 28th December 2018, we briefed at 9:30, that there was a psooibility of flying at 5pm if the window of opportunity did open.

Told us to visit the town, be back for at 12:30, if we wanted it BUT to be back by 14:30 for the possible update.

Dejected Alison and I took the opportunity to visit the Boat museum that housed replicas of Megallen Ship, Darwins Ship the Beagle and Shakleston escape life boat the John Ross. Now this was over 7.5km walk in pouring rain. We meet some Chile Jevhovars Witneeses on the way, fortunately I did not understand their literature. Finally found it after seeking directions form the Chilean Navy.

Whilst looking around Alison received 3 calls from a Chilean phone number. I thought bloody hell even the Chileans are trying to sell us Insurance. On the fourth ring Alison answered and it was the company saying the flight was brought forward to 14:00 and can we get back now. Having spent 1.5 hours to walk there, we flagged down a taxi,and returned to the hotel. Packed up only to find the bus had just left without us or our bags. Fortunately the traffic lights up the road went red and we ran after the bus, in full artic gear and carrying our luggage. Talk about sweat, and stress. Once aboard headed to the airport on onto our journey.



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