Coronation Island, South Orkney Islands

Nov 20, 2017 - National Geographic Orion

The National Geographic Orion dipped below 60 degrees south latitude for a quick stop at Coronation Island en route to Elephant Island and the Antarctic Peninsula. Not only does this put us officially into Antarctica for treaty purposes, but we have clearly moved into a colder and more severe climate regime. Fog and low clouds routinely drape the western point of the Island, which hosts thousands of chinstrap penguins lining all available shorelines along this part of the coast.  Luckily the wind, clouds, and sea cooperated enough to allow a landing on the small beach, where the penguins entertained all who made it ashore. By mid-morning we were again on our way across the open sea, avoiding pack ice in a freshening southerly wind, as we roughly paralleled Shackleton’s perilous passage to South Georgia in reverse.

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About the Author

Robert Edwards


Growing up in the Appalachian foothills of the Garden State, Rob instinctively knew it made a lot more sense to head over the hill into the fields, forests, lakes, and streams behind his house, rather than down the road to the shopping mall in front of it. The natural world piqued the inherent curiosity in all of us and set his life course based on these questions: how does the world work, and how do we as humans fit into it?  

About the Photographer

Dan Westergren

National Geographic Photographer

Dan Westergren has spent three decades producing award-winning images as a National Geographic Society photographer, photo editor, and social media strategist. Years after being introduced to the camera by an indulgent eighth-grade science teacher, Westergren became Director of Photography at National Geographic Traveler, where he developed a photographic aesthetic that has defined the magazine’s visual impact in print, digital, and social media.

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