Beagle Channel and Cape Horn

Mar 12, 2018 - National Geographic Orion


Today we sail! As we meander our way through the Beagle Channel where we were initially blessed with the warmth of sunshine on our catamaran cruise, we again got our dosage of vitamin D as we headed through towards Cape Horn. This was an unexpected delight, as the hotel staff hosted a late morning meal of delicious Bavarian bratwurst and Bloody Mary’s, which we were able to enjoy while warming our bones in the sun.

To occupy our minds as we digested the delicious dogs, Eduardo hosted a lecture about Patagonia and Cape Horn, describing the challenges that early explorers faced while trying to fight westwardly to deliver their goods to the Western Americas. This arduous journey around the cape could take sailors up to three months to complete, facing the relentless gale force winds.

We experienced many seasons as we sailed Cape Horn, the southernmost headland of the Tierra del Fuego Archipelago. With coordination of the staff and crew, we got to shore, which is no easy feat. One of our veteran naturalists had been waiting 17 years to get ashore here, after many previous bad-weather days not permitting access.

Our weather window was wonderful, arriving during placid seas before the rains came. But the silver lining had our onboard photographers glued to their cameras, as a double rainbow rose from the Pacific Ocean, framing the cape’s memorial. This made for phenomenal photo opportunities.

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About the Author

Paolo Marra-Biggs

Naturalist/Expedition Diver

Paolo grew up just five miles from the ocean and for as long as he can remember, he’s always spent his free time in and around the water. As a high school student, he volunteered during the summer at the Monterey Bay Aquarium and he was an active Junior Lifeguard. 

About the Videographer

Mark Coger

Video Chronicler

Growing up in a military family, Mark Coger has been traveling most of his life.  While living in Japan, he developed his passion for videography.  He began his venture in the field of video production by filming numerous events for a local high school and the military community before moving to Southern California, where he obtained his degree in filmmaking at California State University Northridge.  From there, he went on to produce and direct his first major short film, An American Journalist which was screened at the Method Film Festival.

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