January 19 Panorama
Woke up to the scene of icebergs and islands all around us. This morning we had our first Zodiac excursion to The Fish Islands.
Ice all around us as we get ready for our first exc ursion of the trip.
Lowering the boats
Craining down the zodiacs and kayaks before the expedition.
Leading the way
Expedition leader Aaron on the radio getting everything prepped. The entire expedition crew were awesome. In sun, rain, snow, and driving wind they kept up a positive attitude.
Kayaks waiting for their paddlers.
Colourful bergy bits would float by from time to time on Antarctic parade.
Akademik Sergey Vavilov
The Vavilov in her element. The is an odd effect once you get to ANtarctica. In Ushuaia the ship looks white but down there, where everything is truly white, you realize the ship is actually grey.
Lying around in the snow
This seal didn't care it was snowing, it just wanted a quick nap before it went after some more krill.
I smell you
Seal getting a good whiff of human as we glide up to it. The nice thing for us tourists is none of the Antarctic animals are really afraid of us or the zodiacs so tey generally don't run away. SOmetimes they are curious about us too.
The ice often formed familiar shapes. Do you see the rhino head or is it just me? Or is it a Triceratops?
Our first penguin siting. A lone Gentoo taking a break from fishing.
Gentoo on an ice raft
Gentoo looking at us float up as it takes a break from fishing.
Clear layers of ice reflect back as blue. This layer may have been caused as the ice melted and pooled before refreezing.
Welcome to my home
Our first penguin seems to give us a welcome bow or curtsy.
An ice carvers dream
Your science lesson of the day: the more times light is refracted through ice, the more blue it will appear.
The scale like texture is caused from the ice melting and refreezing over and over.
Pure pieces of ice like this were magical. It's something you could look at for hours...and we did!
The ice had some pieces of rock or dirt in it leading me to speculate it was the bottom of an iceberg before it bot top heavy and flipped. How old is this ice? Where did it come from?
What do you see in the ice? A bird's head maybe?
I'm seeing shapes in everything. Do you see the penguin cutout where the hole is? The beak is looking left and it has it's right flipper out? (maybe I've been editing pictures too long...)
Our first Adelie penguin says hi.
While it looks like he was saying "back off" he was really just tired...
Adelie's were the smallest of the penguins we saw. Their reverse eye shadow made me see them as movie stars.
The wind caused intricate designs in the side of the ice.
I never asked about all the scars on this seal. I'm assuming they're caused by other seals and encounters with rough ice.
Icy Fish Island
Minke Tail Fluke
The red or brown colour in the ice is caused by ice algae which will turn red on the surface as a form of sun screen to protect it against ultraviolet radiation.
The visible ice used to be the bottom of an iceberg that would have ran aground and picked up sediment. Over time, as the ice in the ocean melted, it became top heavy and flipped uncovering the dirt.
So Much Ice
From big to small the ice is everywhere and much of it with interesting carved pieces.
You can really see the depth of the ice underwater.
Hitchin a ride
A couple of Gentoo taking a ride on a berg.
Blue and White Ice