Blogs from South Georgia, South America

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South America » South Georgia » South Georgia January 1st 2014

South Georgia has several abandonned whaling stations along the eastern coastline. All of them (except Grytviken) are closed to visitors because of airborne asbestos and the high likelihood that they'll collapse, and as it is generally windy, there's a good chance of a flying piece of debris whacking you. They are in spectacular settings! Surrounded by formidable mountains and huge glaciers, these stations are now relics of the brutal whaling industries of yesteryear and are havens for the abundant wildlife. We explored a beach and valley near Stromness and had countless close encounters with penguins and seals. The fur seals at Stromness were quite protective of their resting areas and we all got charged at and growled at multiple times. It was great fun! On Christmas evening we arrived at King Edward Point (KEP), the administrative ... read more
South Georgia Landscape
Fur Seal
Stromness Whaling Station

South America » South Georgia » South Georgia December 29th 2013

Welcome to South Georgia! Shag Rocks are an impresive group of jagged, cormorant infested rocks poking out of the ocean about three quarters of the way between the Falklands and South Georgia. We couldn't stop the ship near the rocks as the sea was too rough but we did get to watch the tens of thousands shags (cormorants) that nested there. As the ship sailed past he rocks we saw a blow! This was a blow of a large whale! We set our eyes on the northern horizon and watched the whale come closer. At about 100 metres from the ship this mighty whale revealed itself as it rose from the water like a submarine. It was colossal! A blue whale - the mightiest creature to have ever lived on this planet was right before our ... read more
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South America » South Georgia » South Georgia February 13th 2013

South Georgia. I will be the first to admit that I had no idea what to expect of the place, and knew next to nothing about it. This was rectified pretty quickly thanks to some talks on the place and the sheer excitement that all of the staff felt for the place – and you know it’s a pretty great sign when even the staff can’t wait to get there. South Georgia was first used for sealing and then whaling. It is quite staggering how many whales were killed there, largely for oil – in the 1929 to 1930 whaling season alone, 30,000 blue whales were killed. Thankfully all of this has now stopped and all native wildlife is protected. We saw some of the old whaling stations, notably Grytviken, that are now falling into disrepair. ... read more
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Sometime around my freshman year of high school I was riding a four wheeler in the Scammalhorn Twin’s backyard and I saw a fence where there had never been a fence. I tried to turn the four wheeler but it just caught the tip of the handlebar and flipped me - hard enough that I rolled onto my wheels again. This was the last time I was on a four wheeler… until I rode one again last weekend. I was trucking along when I noticed, waaaaaaaaaaaay too late to stop myself, that I was about to smash into a thin (turns out electric) fence. Having learned my lesson that if you try and avoid fences they flip you over, I went ahead and marked “punch through electric fence at 40 miles an hour” off my bucket ... read more
Maria, La Reina of Carnaval
Riding horses
Rey MoMo

South America » South Georgia February 13th 2012

1) Gregory Johnson 2)Father 3) the 90's 4)The enviorment was peaceful, everyone was proud to be the way they were and evryone showed eachother love 5) during the 90's was the time i started to open my buisness, people had just found out about my resturant and evryone was excited to come try my food. 6) during the 90's the most memorable social issue was the Bill Cliton and Monica scandle, it changed peoples views about our president and hurt alot of people who believed and look up to Clinton. 7)During the 90's was when my buisness first started and it is also when it flourished, i havent had as many customers since then, it was when i created my reputation of being who i am today Reflection 1) yea i think location can influenece a ... read more

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South America » South Georgia » South Georgia January 15th 2010

After a wonderful landing at Salisbury Plain on South Georgia (well worth the 36 hour wait while the storm died down) we are back on the ship making our way along the north coast of the island. Its a continuous show of spectacular views, even with the heavy swell and low cloud its impossible not to stand outside and watch it all sailing past. After a few hours we turn into Fortuna Bay and as we travel the 3 miles to the glacier at the end of the fjord we become totally surrounded by the stunning scenery - you could just sit on the top deck and soak up the 360 degree view for hours. Indeed, as the swells are still strong and there are big waves crashing on the landing beach the more sensible passengers ... read more
fur seals enjoying the swells and accompanying us on our joruney
entering Fortuna Bay
the landing beach at Fortuna Bay

South America » South Georgia » South Georgia January 14th 2010

After 36hrs of bobbing around looking at land (well ok - mostly low cloud with the occasional glimpse of land) we have finally managed to set foot on South Georgia. The force 12 storm has died down but there are still strong swells (apparently they takes several hours to subside after a storm) so most of the beaches have big waves rolling in and crashing on them Luckily, there is one tiny sheltered spot where the swells are smaller and we manage to land. Our destination is the King Penguin colony at Salisbury Plain - its only a mile away but it takes an age to get there as the entire route is full of wildlife that seems to want to play. On the landing beach the Antarctic fur seal pups come charging right up to ... read more
the landing beach - full of fur seals
making our way through the tussac grass
crossing the plains towards the penguin colony

South America » South Georgia » South Georgia January 13th 2010

3 nights and 3 full days - that's how long we are out in the open seas between The Falklands and South Georgia. Luckily its warm and sunny with calm seas and the wildlife entertainment show is still in full swing. The sea-birds are constantly circling the ship including some new species e.g. wandering albatrosses, grey-headed albatross, black bellied storm petrels, soft-plumaged petrels. During the second day the sea temperature dropped from 10oC to 4oC. This means we have crossed the Antarctic Convergence and are now officially in Antarctic Waters. This day was officially christened Whale Day - in total we saw 72 whales (fin, bottlenose, sei and southern right) and 27 hour-glass dolphins, how spectacular. Some just pass by fleetingly, some get on with the job of feeding right in front of us taking no ... read more
Fin Whales
Fin Whales - taking a breather
wandering albatross




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