Daily Expedition Reports

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Lastest Expedition Reports

  • Tracy Arm – Ford’s Terror Wilderness

    This week onboard National Geographic Sea Lion, we began with a fantastic day of exploring the Tracy Arm-Ford’s Terror Wilderness. With a morning of hiking and kayaking in Williams Cove and afternoon Zodiac trips to South Sawyer Glacier, we oriented ourselves to many of the plants and animals of the Southeast Alaskan landscape and the incredible driving forces that continue to shape it.

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  • Chatham Strait and Sitkoh Bay

    At 6:00 a.m., our expedition leader announced our first wildlife sighting: killer whales!  We assembled on the bow (wearing fuzzy slippers) carrying cameras, binoculars, and coffee mugs. There were more than a dozen animals in the pod, and it was hard to know which way to look. One of the whales breached 50 meters off the bow, and one surfaced very close to the ship’s starboard side. Groups of two, three, and four animals swam side by side in perfect unison. It was mesmerizing to watch. Wellness specialist Lola led an early morning stretch class (and whale watching) on the aft sun deck.  

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  • Bartolomé and Rábida Islands

    We are in the center of the Galapagos, on our way to the youngest islands. Our first full day was spent on Bartolomé and Rábida Islands. This morning, we began early with the first light of day exploring Bartolomé Island. The landscape looked like that of the Moon with craters everywhere! Although seemingly barren, there are some small creatures that thrive here, and we spotted some of them. There was a Galapagos snake and many lava lizards!

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  • Sisimiut, Greenland

    Nestled just north of Kangerlussuaq, where we took our first steps on Greenland, sits the charming and prosperous hamlet of Sisimiut. The economy there, built on fishing and tourism, was bustling along in the “heat” of summer with construction going like mad and everyone outside working and enjoying the high season. We wandered among homes and businesses in town and took scenic walks to the museums, enjoying classic Greenland scenes complete with sled dogs and a harbor packed with boats. After our afternoon excursions, we were treated to a cultural display of Greenlandic kayak skills just off the stern of the ship.

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  • Fernandina & Isabela Islands

    Today our guests explored the westernmost realm of the Galapagos. First thing in the morning, the entire group landed on the beach to go snorkeling at Punta Espinosa, Fernandina Island. The highlights of the morning were the countless Galapagos marine iguanas that were basking at the shoreline as our guests explored the island. While snorkeling our guests observed many Pacific green sea turtles feeding on seaweed over the rocks. For the afternoon, everybody went out for Zodiac rides to experience Punta Vicente Roca, Isabela Island. This site offers an impressive view of a collapsed volcano. The rocky cliffs provide shelter for Galapagos fur seals and are a good perch for seabirds like Nazca boobies, flightless cormorants and Galapagos penguins.

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  • Fakarava, French Polynesia

    The secret is out: thanks to the amazing footage on Blue Planet 2, the world now knows about the underwater beauty that can be found in Fakarava. Luckily, it’s so remote and hard to get to that few people will ever be able to get here. As the expedition’s undersea specialist, I am always going to focus on finding underwater gems. Here are five images celebrating them!

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  • Glacier Bay National Park, Alaska

    The excitement was palpable this morning on board National Geographic Sea Bird. We all knew this would be the very first time any of us had hiked in this area of Glacier Bay National Park in Southeast Alaska. Expedition Leader Jeff Phillippe had scouted the area last week and determined that we should try it out as an expedition outing—and what a great decision that proved to be!

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  • Loch Ness, Culloden, and Clava Cairns

    During breakfast, we descended the flight of five locks at Fort Augustus and set out on our transit of Loch Ness, the largest body of inland water in the British Isles. It is deeper than any part of the North Sea between Scotland and Denmark. Midway across the loch is Urquhart Castle, strategically situated on a promontory where a Pictish chieftain held sway at the time of St. Columba.

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  • North Seymour and Rabida Islands

    Guests onboard National Geographic Endeavour II spent the day exploring a couple of the centrally located islands, North Seymour and Rabida. Our first excursion was a dry landing on the southern facing side of North Seymour, an island famous for its year-round mating season of the frigate birds. Guests were immediately greeted by a slew of frigate birds speckling the palo santo trees with their red membrane pouches, wings majestically outstretched; this is the mating display of the male frigate birds. This visitor site gives us a special glimpse of the entire life history of these magnificent creatures, from hatchling to juvenile to sub-adult to adult, the frigates can be observed at every life stage at North Seymour.

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  • Tracy Arm

    Our final day in Southeast Alaska was the perfect ending to a perfect trip.  After a night with northern lights, all day today was sunny, warm, and without wind.  Spending the entire day in Tracy Arm, we were in the presence of glaciers throughout.  Getting out in the Zodiacs, surrounded by massive blue icebergs, with giant towers of ice plummeting into the sea….spectacular!

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Please note: Daily Expedition Reports (DER’s) are posted Monday-Friday only, during normal business hours.

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