Spert Islands and Cierva Cove

Feb 25, 2020 - National Geographic Orion


We awoke this morning to another day of brilliant sunshine and calm conditions, having transited eastward in the Gerlache Strait to the vicinity of Trinity Island, near the eastern edge of the Palmer Archipelago. The Spert Island Group is built from dark basaltic rocks extending southwest from Trinity Island, with dramatic bluffs, channels, and arches, with icebergs swept up against a lee shore, and with nesting seabirds from Antarctic terns to chinstrap penguins; perfect for exciting Zodiac cruising when the conditions allow. For the afternoon we crossed the strait to Cierva Cove, one of the most biodiverse areas of the Antarctic peninsula (and specially protected for scientific research), whose interior is filled with the wreckage of ice calved off along miles of active glacier front.

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About the Author

Robert Edwards

Naturalist

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?  

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