When drysuit, warm undergarment, dive equipment and camera gear are packed, I soon find myself at the airport again. My long travel towards Antarctica with Waterproof Expeditions has begun!
From Gothenung, I´m flying via Lisbon, Madrid, Santiago de Chile and Punta Arenas, to finally arrive the small town of Puerto Williams in the very southern part of Chile...
Apparently a too long travel for my luggage which din´t arrive!
Here I am, ready for my first trip to this remote destination Antarctica is, but without my luggage! Let the adventure begin... ;-)
.I´m here to start my first two trips as dive- and snorkel guide for Waterproof Expeditions. Together with the rest of the team, I board the ship "Polar Pioneer" which will be my home during the Expedition.
Pic below of Waterproof Expeditions staff onboard during the Antarctic trips 2015: Martin McGrath, Birgitta Mueck and Peter Szyszka.
.When Polar Pioneer has got her final preparations, staff and crew are ready, and all the guests have arrived, we start our voyage south...
.From Puerto Williams, we head for the Antarctic Peninsula is the northernmost part of the mainland of Antarctica. To get there we need to cross the infamous Drake Passage...
Even though our voyage south over Drake is a bit "rocky", the atmosphere onboard is good and the staff of both Waterproof Expeditions and Aurora Expeditions keep their happy smiles!
.After three days of crossing, we finally arrive Antarctica :-)
I´m still without my luggage though, but with some borrowed clothes and a drysuit lent by Waterproof Expeditions, this small issue is solved!
.Next to the huge icebergs, Polar Pioneer looks very tiny... Onboard the ship, my snorkelers are getting ready for their first snorkel session in Antarctic waters.
.Polar Pioneer unloads the zodiacs and off we go to dive and snorkel!
.We are totally surrounded by icebergs and impressive white landscape sceneries. So much untouched beauty everywhere...
The voyage continues further south and we stop at several different places on our way towards the Antarctic circle.
.The weather varies a lot during our trip, and we have days filled with sunshine, clear skies and calm conditions, to cold and windy days filled with snow and thick fog. Nature truly is amazing and powerful!
However, in our drysuits we keep warm and dry! ;-)
.The water temperature in these icy waters is about 0°C...
Warm undergarment underneath the drysuit keeps you comfortable even in these conditions.
.Onboard Polar Pioneer you are offered to make the "Polar Plunge".
Let us get in the water again, but this time without drysuit!!
.One of the main attractions in Antarctica is for sure the penguins. And yes, it is truly hard not to fall in love in these super cute and humoristic personalities :-)
Antarctic waters are great for whale spotting as well, and we do get numerous encounters with these huge mammals. The humpback whales were the most common whale during our expedition.
.We visit new areas every day...
Each place has its own beauty and character. So wild, remote and unaffected by large scale human activities. The grand feeling of this amazing place is hard to describe.
.This is a trip to enjoy whether you are a diver/snorkler or not. Many of our guests are non divers and instead of going in the water, they go for landings and/or zodiac cruises.
.Barbeque evening onboard Polar Pioneer is something everybody should experience! ;-) This time we even had the great pleasure to have the full moon joining our party... :-)
.And so the day comes when it is time to leave Antarctica, cross the Drake and head back to the civilized world again...
.This time, Cape Horn shows up after two days relatively calm Drake Passage crossing :-)
.Are you interested in joining a trip to Antarctica?
For more information about Waterproof Expeditions and their many exotic travel destinations, please visit their web site:
Wether you are a diver, snorkeler, nature lover, adventurer, photographer, traveler or simply a happy "being being" we would love to hear from you! :-)