George Island and Inians

Jul 16, 2019 - National Geographic Sea Bird


Some expedition moments are etched into your memory forever.

Stepping foot onto South Georgia for the first time and being greeted by dozens of king penguins at Elsehul. Watching Sea Cloud under full sail on the Adriatic Sea off the coast of Albania. An electrifying sunset over Land’s End at the southernmost tip of the Baja California Sur peninsula.

Today, I had the honor of adding this moment with guests aboard National Geographic Sea Bird: staring awestruck as a 45-foot-long humpback whale arched and dove underneath our watercraft amidst sleeting rain in the Inian Islands, the mist of its exhale wafting over our boat.

From sighting tufted puffins while kayaking at George Island, watching juvenile peregrine falcons hone their flight skills, and powering through whirlpools as Steller sea lions porpoised out of the water around us, to the indescribable experience of coming so close to true giants as we were surrounded by feeding humpback whales, today was a day for creating lifelong memories.

The diving whale is mine…but mine is only one story to tell.

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About the Author

Lauren Buchholz

Naturalist/Certified Photo Instructor

Originally from the San Francisco Bay Area, Lauren’s wanderlust has taken her from the Appalachians to the Rockies to the Southern Alps.

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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