Tuesday, March 24, 2009



Wakeup call at 6:30 a.m, to watch the ship entering Neptune's Bellows, Deception Island. Deception Island is most noted for its geology, being the largest of three volcanic centers in the South Shetlands. Deception has erupted in 1800, 1812, 1842, 1871, 1912, 1956, 1967, 1969, and 1970. Neptune's Bellows is a narrow opening to the half-moon shaped bay. Unfortunately for us, we were socked in with fog which prevented us from enjoying this very scenic area. Nevertheless, we landed at Fumerole Bay in heavy mist. Both Argentine and Spanish research stations are on these shores, but not open to visitors. Very little wildlife was present at the landing site. So, I photographed the rocks, lichens, and mosses. One lonely adult Gentoo Penguin was in catastrophic molt on the beach. A flock of Kelp Gulls at the water's edge was constantly harassed by two skuas. A single WILSON'S STORM-PETREL flew out from the scree rocks, as I walked the beach. Presumably, they nest in this scree. I walked to an active fumerole, and could also see bubbles, like champagne, along the nearshore.The long hikers walked up the ridge to the top of the caldera rim, halfway down the outside and down to the CHINSTRAP PENGUIN colony. During the breeding season as many as 100,000 chinstraps are present, but this late in the season, only 2000 were present. Two SOUTHERN GIANT PETRELS, SUB-ANTARCTIC SKUAS, and six HUMPBACK WHALES which were feeding offshore! 

During lunch, we repositioned to the Whaler's Bay area of Deception Island. Our good luck with the weather seems to be running short. As, now we were confronted with gale force winds of 20+ knots. Troels announced a "standby" for future announcements, pending our scheduled afternoon landing at Whaler's Bay. The hike to Bailey Head is already canceled, as we cannot get far away from the ship in bad weather. Some hearty souls landed at Whaler's Bay where they had views of some of the whaling artifacts. And, soon it was time to return to our home on board Professor Multanovskiy, and meet for recap in the bar. A delicious salmon dinner was enjoyed by all. During the night, we once again crossed the Bransfield Strait and then into the Gerlache Strait. 

PO Box 190, Hollister, CA 95024

Antarctica, South Georgia, & The Falkland Islands: January 5-24, 2010
Exclusive charter with Debra Shearwater
Only 3 cabins available

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