Halfmoon Is and Arriving to Antarctica

Dec 30, 2018 - National Geographic Explorer


We have met Antarctica! Just after noon we spotted our first iceberg and knew we were approaching. By the time lunch ended National Geographic Explorer was cruising amongst the South Shetland Islands, just off the Bransfield Strait, on the Northwest side of the Antarctic Peninsula. The navigation was full of beautiful sights of glaciers, penguins in the water, and whales to boot! We motored into Halfmoon Island to the site of a scarcely manned Argentine research base and landed amongst the abundant chinstrap penguins and numerous seabirds and seals scattered across the beach. A fantastic place to begin our tour of Antarctica. After a nice leg-stretch around the island and plenty of time to fill up our memory cards we headed home to the ship for dinner but were delayed by encountering a tabular iceberg of enormous proportions. Recap was scratched, and dinner pushed back while we cruised along the 100ft wall of ice that no doubt dropped another thousand feet below the waves. Nearly a square mile, this ice surely came from a massive ice sheet to the south and is most likely the largest berg many of us will ever see. A fine welcome to the white continent indeed! 

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About the Author

James Hyde

Naturalist

James is your typical free-range Pacific Northwest outdoorsy type. Born in Seattle and reared nearby on Vashon Island, he is most comfortable in slightly cold and damp weather. James joined the Lindblad team in July 2016 as a dive buddy and has been in love with expedition travel since. On his own he has traveled to Europe, Asia, and Australia, but with Lindblad he hopes to continue his adventures across the globe, searching out the beauties of the natural world. An avid scuba diver James can’t help being excited about whales, sharks, and pinnipeds, but he will also happily bend your ear about underwater slugs and invertebrates. It’s best just to humor him about these things.

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