Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did.
So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover. --- Mark Twain

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Antarctica, Day 9-11

The next two days, March 1 and 2 were spent on returning over the Drake Passage.

Seasickness pills helped so much to all that was eaten up nicely maintained inside as long as needed. But I felt a serious shortage of a decent safe - belt which would have been a great help of staying in bed, as occasionally two hands had to be used to have a strong grip of while holding on to the edges of the mattress.

And while going to have breakfast or just moving around there was one rule – one hand is for the ship. Fortunately there were enough means on in the lobbies of holding on.  


The sight at The Drake Passage, March 1, 9.40 am
01.03 Noon Report

Some information about the ship:
Staff and Crew 94
Guests 114 - it was us.
Lifeboats 4 partially enclosed
Length 90.6 meters
Breadth 15.3 m
Draft 4.16 m
Propulsion Diesel - 4,720 horsepower
Ice Class 1D
Cruising Speed 14.5 knots in open water

Another difference between the conventional ships and this one is that after the departure of The Beagle Canal all passengers were allowed to go to the bridge and follow the navigation of the vessel

And is not permitted to leave the door to the captain bridge open


The weather of the second of March was calmer. I wanted to see Cape Horn and I was not the only one who had come to the bridge with this wish but this was not possible, it was said to be too far away. And compared to the previous morning there were more people in the dining room already.


Journey from The Beagle Channel to Antarctica and back. And on March 3 in the morning we arrived back in Ushuaia.

I packed my things and quietly wondered as somehow my belongings didn`t want to fit within any more although I had bought nothing except two Antarctic maps. But yes, the new yellow Quark Expedition's winter jacket took quite some space.

Daily breakfast and then the plan was to leave the ship. Everything was nicely arranged, starting with the fact that the luggage that was left behind the cabin door was taken to the pier - no need to pull it oneself down along the ship`s staircases.

On the quay large buses were waiting for the people to take some passengers straight to the airport and others to the hotels.

On the other side of the pier one more ship – built for sailing in Antarctica.

Only much bigger or at least higher.

The airport and hotel were not my line - it's another world.

I took my blue suitcase and the backpack and walked along the quay, stopped for a moment, looked at the ship and people with whom I had visited this beautiful and almost untouched World of Ice, made one more image and went on.

Now I should make a summary but all the emotions are still too fresh and more time is needed to comprehend all the experienced.

In an earlier comment I was asked whether such a trip was worthwhile. A few moments:

Aitcho Island - the first landing.

Half Moon Island.

Cierva Cove

Cuerville Island

Port Locroy - wet and windy

Pleneau Island

Neko Harbour – Landing on the Antarctic continent.

Paradise Bay

Morning Lemaire Channel with its mirror smooth water..

And the answer is I cannot recalculate this kind of experience into money, Antarctica is still such a rare place. Powerful and untouched nature. All these glaciers and icebergs. Whales swimming about 3 meters from the rubber boat and of course, the penguins. And the crossing the legendary Drake Passage.

But the more I move around, the more I appreciate Mark Twain's saying :

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you did not do than by the ones you did...”

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