Dec 11, 2018 - National Geographic Orion
Rays of sunshine rolled in off the snow-kissed mountains this morning as we headed down the famed Lemaire Channel, so named by Belgian explorer,
We jumped into Zodiacs to explore our new surroundings. The calving faces of huge glaciers watched us career around the bay, occasionally letting out deep groans and plumes of snow into the mirror-calm sea. On one side we were bordered by Booth Island, where French explorer Charcot once overwintered. On the other, we were surrounded by the edge of the Antarctic Peninsula.
Our cruises yielded intimate views of gentoo penguins, blue-eyed shags, crabeater seals, Weddell seals and a myriad of incredible ice structures. Massive pillars of ice, all pock-marked with golf ball pattern and strange irregular arches refracted the light, creating strange blue glows.
After lunch, we were back to the water again, this time by kayak. From the quiet of a kayak, our icy world seemed to take on a different quality. From sea level, the constant crackling of the brash ice could be heard, along with the rushing of the odd wave against the underside of the huge impressive burgs.
After we returned to the ship, we heard recaps from several of our naturalist team covering topics from killer whales to bird photography. All in all a fantastic day!
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