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rafinmd

Around the Horn in 80 days.

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Great reports, Roy.

So nice that Rene & his wife joined you.  They are charming company, indeed 🙂 

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We are booked in the same cabin boon port for our cruise this summer. I’m curious about the port holes and how they work. It sounds like you expected them to have been closed for the crossing of Drake? Am I understanding correctly?  Are there “soft coverings “ for them (curtains)? How do you attain privacy when docked?

Edited by TiogaCruiser

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53 minutes ago, TiogaCruiser said:

We are booked in the same cabin boon port for our cruise this summer. I’m curious about the port holes and how they work. It sounds like you expected them to have been closed for the crossing of Drake? Am I understanding correctly?  Are there “soft coverings “ for them (curtains)? How do you attain privacy when docked?

It's just like a regular ocean view cabin but with much smaller windows.  They are small and have covers because they are very low and forward so subject to a rogue wave.  They have regular drapes just like any ocean view cabins.

 

Roy

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Great report.

 

Love that the penguins have been "busy".

 

Punxsutawney has only been right 39% of the time.  Not a good record.

 

Love the pictures.

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Day P30. Sunday, February 3, 2019, Antarctic Experience(Paradise Harbor)


Our first day at Antarctica (we will never be truly in or on Antarctica) started very early as we started our transit of Dallman Bay about 5AM, sailing between Brabant and Anvers Islands.  We saw quite a bit of ice, including an impressive tabular iceberg roughly the size of the Prinsendam on our portside.


https://morethangetaways.files.wordpress.com/2019/02/tabular03.jpg


Sunrise was about 4:45; almost an hour and a half later the sun came up over Brabant Island.


https://morethangetaways.files.wordpress.com/2019/02/dawn0203.jpg


We saw occasional wildlife throughout the day but our first major sighting was a group of Chinstrap Penguins on a glacier to our starboard side.


https://morethangetaways.files.wordpress.com/2019/02/chinstrap.jpg


I had walked about 4 miles early, planning to do another mile as I went to the lido for coffee, breakfast, and lunch.  I had almost circled the ship about 9, heading up to the lido for a waffle when there was a report of whales on our starboard side.  I was just rounding the stern about that time and I caught a blow just as I reached the deck 8 landing.


https://morethangetaways.files.wordpress.com/2019/02/blow03.jpg


A little after that the whale dived.


https://morethangetaways.files.wordpress.com/2019/02/fluke03.jpg


When I was here on the Professor Multinovski we made daily landings but most were on islands with just one on the actual Antarctic continent.  It was at Paradise Bay, an Argentine station and we sailed past it a little after 10:30.


https://morethangetaways.files.wordpress.com/2019/02/paradise.jpg


There were a couple of glaciers near Paradise Bay.  One had a number of holes at the waterline; I am guessing they were caused by water runoff sneaking under the glacier to the sea.


https://morethangetaways.files.wordpress.com/2019/02/paradiseglacier.jpg


The temperature was a pretty constant 4C/38F but the feel varied a lot with the wind speed and direction.  There were times I was quite comfortable in my gortex jacket but most of the day I wore the parka I got for my 2016 Northwest Passage cruise.  As I headed up to lunch we passed another base, this one maintained by Chile.


https://morethangetaways.files.wordpress.com/2019/02/chilebase.jpg


That base was home to a number of Gentoo penguins.  I walked up to deck 13 for a better camera angle and found that one of the most prominent signs of a penguin colony is olfactory.


https://morethangetaways.files.wordpress.com/2019/02/gentoo.jpg


That point was about as far south as we got during the day, 64:54:54 degrees South, about 95 miles North of the Antarctic Circle.  Two presentations had been scheduled Craig Franklin at 10 on Ice through the eyes of artists, and Noel Miller at 2 on Antarctic geopolitics.  Morning scenic cruising had gone on longer than expected so Miller's presentation was postponed and Franklin's talk was moved to 2.  I went out on deck for a final look before he spoke and we had a bit of a brush with a bergy bit.  I watched as it passed about 2 feet below me.  I had visited the future cruise consultant during a pause in the activities and after Craig's talk there was a letter waiting for me.  I don't know if it will happen but I have a deposit on a segment of the 2021 World Cruise.  


https://morethangetaways.files.wordpress.com/2019/02/bergswipe.jpg


We had our interdenominational worship service at 4.  The Canaletto has daily specials but many Sundays there is a set menu.  I wanted to try the Chicken Parmesan offered on Sunday and this looked like the time to do it.  My reservation was 6:30 and after the service I went up to the Crows Nest for a little more viewing in comfort.  It was still quite crowded but folding chairs had been brought in and there was seating for everyone pretty much in comfort.


I had a corner seat in the Canaletto with a nice view of the scenery behind us although we soon got far from land.  We are keeping the ship well out in open waters away from the ice overnight and the swells started building up as I dined.  In addition to the chicken parmesan I chose a side of spaghetti and pistachio gelato.


https://morethangetaways.files.wordpress.com/2019/02/dishes03.jpg


The featured entertainment was of course the super bowl, in the showroom.  The penguins had been decked out as referees and there was a nice tailgate buffet at the showroom entry.  I passed through briefly and grabbed a bag of popcorn.  I had felt pretty vigorous during the day but dozed off soon after returning to my cabin.  My parting shot is of course congratulations to the Patriots.


https://morethangetaways.files.wordpress.com/2019/02/superbowl2019.jpg


Roy

 

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Love your reports and wonderful pictures.

 

Got that 404 message again for the penguin colony.

 

Cute that a couple of penguins were dressed as refs.

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2 hours ago, Krazy Kruizers said:

Love your reports and wonderful pictures.

 

Got that 404 message again for the penguin colony.

 

Cute that a couple of penguins were dressed as refs.

I post to my blog by email with the photos as email attachments and then create links for use in Cruise Critic.  I will swear I clicked on that photo for inclusion in the email but it didn't end up there.  I don't know if I overlooked it or the photo got unchecked while I was selecting other photos.  Anyway, here it is (I'm not sure if it will appear as more than the thumbnail below but it should; Cruise Critic is driving me crazy today):gentoo.JPG.129cb8152f7a25d51e99ecc0321f2992.JPG

 

Roy

 

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OMGosh Roy the pictures are a WOW!!!

Love the sunrise picture spectacular and the penguins colony just hope someday we can take this voyage!

Denise😊

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Wow.  I wish I could be there with you.  Your pictures are great.

The food looks yummy too.

Nice to see the penguins dressed for the big game.

Thanks.

 

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Hi, Roy,  I'm really enjoying your return trip to Antarctica!  I am most interested in your visit to Grytviken.  When we were there - 7 years ago, now, eek! - this was the dock:P1020966.thumb.jpg.09b40f0199d56cd1f805777702b570f2.jpg

 

So, I am extremely interested to see how you get ashore!

 

We donate to the South Georgia Heritage Trust, so we get their newsletters, but I have seen nothing about a new dock - although they are removing (or culling) the reindeer, so they may have had to make a few improvements.  I would like to see a comparison photo of your dock to "my" dock, please.:classic_cool:

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On 2/3/2019 at 12:46 AM, teamflames said:

Can you give Erin the ACD a hug from James and Fleur, she is such a sweetie! We stay in contact with her after sailing on the Noordam with her. Enjoy the rest of your cruise.

Erin was thrilled to hear from you.

 

Roy

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17 minutes ago, rafinmd said:

Erin was thrilled to hear from you.

 

Roy

That was very kind of you. Sounds like it is a great sailing.

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5 hours ago, rafinmd said:

I post to my blog by email with the photos as email attachments and then create links for use in Cruise Critic.  I will swear I clicked on that photo for inclusion in the email but it didn't end up there.  I don't know if I overlooked it or the photo got unchecked while I was selecting other photos.  Anyway, here it is (I'm not sure if it will appear as more than the thumbnail below but it should; Cruise Critic is driving me crazy today):gentoo.JPG.129cb8152f7a25d51e99ecc0321f2992.JPG

 

Roy

 

 

Great picture.  Thank you.

 

CC has been driving a lot of us crazy today.  I had to quit shortly after our Noon lunch.  Pages would just keep going up and down and up and down.

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11 hours ago, rafinmd said:

I don't know if it will happen but I have a deposit on a segment of the 2021 World Cruise.  

 

Loving your blog....and great photos.....thanks....!!!

 

I haven't seen the itinerary for the 2021 World Cruise....totally curious which segment you picked....unless it's a surprise for later.....:)

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Quick post and then more scenic areas.

 

Day P31, Monday, February 4, 2019, Antarctic Experience(Palmer Archipelago)


During the day we are in sheltered waters.  Captain Jeroen is taking us well out to sea overnight and Sunday evening we had quite a bit of motion.  There's a map just outside the lower promenade door where the crew is charting our course and a big loop in the track indicates just how far out we went to be away from overnight ice.


https://morethangetaways.files.wordpress.com/2019/02/night2sea.jpg


Days are very long here.  The sun is up before I am and I'm getting ready for bed by the time it sets.  It hasn't really made a lot of difference since the sun hasn't been out much.


https://morethangetaways.files.wordpress.com/2019/02/longday.jpg


Most of Sunday had been a picture perfect day.  I would like to think that Monday was the real Antarctica but am sure Shackleton, Scott and others would disagree.  Perhaps the real northern Antarctic Peninsula in summer.  The day had been picked for On Deck For a Cause and my plan had been to walk about 2 miles in the morning with the rest with the group at 3PM.  When I went on deck it was cold and foggy with an occasional drizzle.  My revised plan was to walk close to 3 miles while I could and perhaps do just a token lap with the group if conditions continued to deteriorate.  I was not really looking for anything on that dismal morning but was surprised to hear a blow off the starboard side.  It was not much of a photo op between my bulky gloves and the animal's swift movements but I did catch a bit of fluke.


https://morethangetaways.files.wordpress.com/2019/02/whales04.jpg


The highlight of the day was to be a visit by scientists from Palmer Station.  I was lucky enough to visit Palmer off the Professor Multinovski in 1997 but disappointed in 2016 when storms prevented visits from Palmer staff to the Crystal Symphony.  The visit is a very popular attraction and they made 2 presentations based on dinner seatings, 8:30 for early diners and 10 for second seating.  Presentations were made by station chief Bob Farrell (top left) and by research director Randy Jones.  After their formal presentations they were joined on stage by 5 other staff for about a 20-minute Q&A session.


https://morethangetaways.files.wordpress.com/2019/02/palmercrew.jpg


I had an omelet early and after the session went back to the lido for some toast.  The drizzle had changed to a wet snow which had been pushed back to the sides of the lido and a small snow man was placed on the Dive-In window.  Several of the crew were tossing snowballs on the pool deck.  At one point Security Officer Norm joined in the fray and had just tossed one and immediately was ambushed by a snowball from deck 12.


https://morethangetaways.files.wordpress.com/2019/02/snow04.jpg


I was a bit surprised that the Palmer staff had not brought any goodies with them to sell but they left pretty well loaded.  They left about 11.  It was still quite foggy as their Zodiac came in to meet with them and they loaded first supplies (I saw a lot of soda and what looked like milk as well as fresh vegetables and perhaps some wine) and then themselves and faded off into the fog.


https://morethangetaways.files.wordpress.com/2019/02/adieu.jpg


There was a "penguin plunge" at 1:30 where a number of guests took a dip in a very chilly pool on a very chilly day.  I took my lunch (Macaroni & cheese with ham) out on the pool deck and watched as they did it.  The water was probably fine but it would have been brutal both waiting for the signal to get in and then again getting out.


https://morethangetaways.files.wordpress.com/2019/02/plunge.jpg


The afternoon was mostly a chance to thaw out.  Expedition leader Lou had his talk in the afternoon on Antarctic Geopolitics.  On Deck For A Cause was postponed until later in the cruise.  During the day I had managed about 3 ½ miles around the ship.


There was more scenic cruising starting about 4 in Wilhelmina Bay.  I watched mostly from the Crows Nest although the worst of the weather had passed us.  In a brief foray out to the deck I saw a whale, a glacier, seals, and a 1450 foot snow-covered "mountain" in a single journey around deck 12.


https://morethangetaways.files.wordpress.com/2019/02/wilhelmina.jpg


Most of table 19 had booked a cellar master dinner in the Pinnacle Grill.  I looked at the dining room menu and nothing attracted but the Lido menu included a leg of lamb which looked good and that became my plan.  My lunch had been pretty heavy so I did not have a big dinner with just one scoop of ice cream for desert.


https://morethangetaways.files.wordpress.com/2019/02/dishes04.jpg


The featured entertainment was a vocal group Ida.  They were not really my cup of tea.


https://morethangetaways.files.wordpress.com/2019/02/ida.jpg


I was just finishing up picking my photos for the day when an announcement came that there were Humpback Whales off our port side.  It was worth it putting on my jacket for a brief foray outside one more time.


https://morethangetaways.files.wordpress.com/2019/02/humpback.jpg


Although we are on an unlimited internet the wifi times out every 3 hours, even while it is in active use.  Each time we log in we get a new Bing home screen so I see several in the course of a day.  Today's became the basis of my parting shot.  A single ordinary person may not move mountains but can still be the starting point for big changes.  Happy Birthday Rosa Parks.

https://morethangetaways.files.wordpress.com/2019/02/rosa.jpg


Roy

 

 

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Thanks Roy for your in-depth report. Love the pictures and seeing whales.

For me it would be too cold to walk on the promenade, I’d be up in The Crows Nest

doing my viewing. 

Roy has the time factor with how long the days are make it difficult at first to adapt

to a routine with sleep? I remember being in Anchorage and with the long days how light it was outside at 1am. 

Thanks for a great report.

Denise😊

 

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Hi Roy,

i have been following.but haven’t commented yet.  Just wanted to thank you for your great reports, pictures, I am so excited for you all, and your commentary takes me along on your trip.

Mary

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14 hours ago, Rowsby said:

 

Loving your blog....and great photos.....thanks....!!!

 

I haven't seen the itinerary for the 2021 World Cruise....totally curious which segment you picked....unless it's a surprise for later.....:)

It's a surprise--for me.  No clue yet about what the itinerary will be and the deposit allows me to choose a segment once the itinerary is out.  I tend to do a segment of something combined with something else. Crystal's itinerary is out now, and I expect Cunard's will be before too long.  If there are 2 segments that fit together that's how I'll go (My 2020 plan is Crystal Serenity LA to Sydney, a 3-day hotel stay, and then QM2 Sydney to New York).  I'm not likely to find something that perfect but who knows.

 

Roy

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1 hour ago, rafinmd said:

If there are 2 segments that fit together that's how I'll go (My 2020 plan is Crystal Serenity LA to Sydney, a 3-day hotel stay, and then QM2 Sydney to New York).  I'm not likely to find something that perfect but who knows.

 

Wow....that does sound perfect.....!!!

 

 

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Denise, I don't think that's really much of an issue.  The drapes do a pretty good job of keeping the light down.

 

After a very scenic morning we found one of our passages blocked and will have an uneventful afternoon.

 

Roy

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Just now, rafinmd said:

Denise, I don't think that's really much of an issue.  The drapes do a pretty good job of keeping the light down.

 

After a very scenic morning we found one of our passages blocked and will have an uneventful afternoon.

 

Roy

Thanks for the reply Roy! 

Sorry to hear that the area you were going to travel is blocked! The Solitude and quietness of Antarctica would be something to see. I’m glad I’m able to see it through your pictures and writings.

Thankyou

Denise😊

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You were smart to skip the ‘penguin plunge’ IMO Roy. 🙂 

 

YAY on the humpback whales.

 

Your posts and photos are great, as always 😄 

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Great report.

 

No way would I have done the penguin plunge.

 

Cute snowman!!  Snow ball fights are great -- did them many years.

 

Great pictures of the wild life -- whales, etc.

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