Published: January 11th 2012January 11th 2012
Yes finally at Puerto Arenas
Very rough seas last night. 8/9 gale force winds and the boat pitching and rolling. Surprisingly I am not feeling at all sick and Brian is on the tablets. In the night we turned into Canal Trinidad and during the morning cruised the calm waters of Canal Pitt, Andres and Concepcion arriving at the Amalia Glacier by 10 am. Its getting cooler outside but the obsessives walkers are marching round the ship doing their 4 lap miles. This seems to go on all day – a fairly restful day for us with the exception of another tango lesson after lunch then caught up with the twitchers on the promenade deck where we discovered that what I though was a sea gull was actually a small albatross of which there are plenty. In the evening we went to the cinema to see ‘the Help’ – very good. The stunning fjords pass by as we watch for whales without success again today though did see a very large albatross – no idea what type. The night cruise brought us into the Straits of Magellan and Puerto Arenas. We were moored up on waking and left the ship to for an excursion to the ski area just a short ride out of the town. We then took the chair lift to the top of the mountain – (freezing cold but sunny) and walked for 2 hours down through the forest where we spotted two huge eagles. Spectacular to see the famous Straits from a ski resort. Puerto Arenas is so remote it takes them 3 days to drive via the Argentinian border to Santiago. It’s a prosperous looking town though with its own natural gas and off shore oil. I noticed Santander among the city banks.
There are several shore trips from here to see penguins and other sights but the long walk was all we could manage. We have both finished Shackleton’s book and look for evidence of his journey everywhere. We are 53 degrees south at this point and 070 west, having travelled 1030 nautical miles by sea so far. The Antarctic starts at 60 degrees south and its definitely getting colder. About 11 degrees outside today with a wind chill and this is their summer.