By early morning, National Geographic Explorer was sailing in a southerly course for Antarctica. The sea conditions were calm as dawn splashed all over the sky in giant brush strokes. Over Isla Nueva, the subtle pinks rose over the island before disappearing overhead as they blended into pale yellows and oranges, which on turn were swallowed up by blues and greens where the sun would soon appear. Over in the southeast the jagged peaks of Staten Island rose majestically, the rest of the island clearly visible.
National Geographic Resolution
National Geographic Resolution arrived to Fortuna Bay early in the morning under a cloud-covered sky. The protection of the bay created a nice relief from the winds. We landed our long hikers shortly after breakfast so they could begin their trek over the headlands to the colony. We then repositioned the ship toward the head of the bay to land the rest of our guests. Fortuna Bay is known as the final leg of Shackleton’s route across the island, and it is home to a large king penguin colony. After we sailed to nearby Hercules Bay, we were treated to conditions calm enough for kayaking and Zodiac cruising. With so much wildlife in the area, guests had some wonderful encounters, especially with the colony of macaroni penguins low on the cliffs of the bay. The ever-fickle weather brought sunshine and light snow flurries, embodying the nature of the island.