Peggotty Bluff and King Haakon Bay
  • Daily Expedition Reports
  • 09 Mar 2022

Peggotty Bluff and King Haakon Bay, 3/9/2022, National Geographic Explorer

  • Aboard the National Geographic Explorer
  • Antarctica

Our voyage along the shores of South Georgia has been defined by incredible wildlife, humbling landscapes, and storied history. For our final day, we looked for a site that would combine all three. We decided on Peggotty Bluff.

In the early morning, we came to King Haakon Bay, the large glacial fjord that, 106 years ago, Ernest Shackleton and his team stumbled into after days in treacherous seas aboard the James Caird. From there, they hoped to find rescue for their men on Elephant Island. We landed to explore the site and learn more about the story. Coincidentally, news was breaking that The Endurance was discovered in the icy waters of the Weddell Sea to the south. Guests hiked alongside king penguins and southern elephant seals on their way to the archaeological site that historian Carol Knott believes is the exact site Shackleton and his men camped. A powerful place to visit on a historic day in discovery and exploration.

Later we set sail toward the Falkland Islands as the sun began to break through the clouds. Before we could get too far, though, we changed course to view the world’s largest animal – the blue whale. Two individuals slowly swam beneath the peaks of the South Georgia coastline with other species, including humpback and fin whales in the distance. We made one final stop at the Willis Islands to the north for a look at macaroni penguins and black-browed albatrosses before we were finally on our way again.

An epic end to an epic time in one of the world’s most epic destinations.

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