The Dragon Wagon

The Dragon Wagon
The landscaping changes often.

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Antarctic Adventure - Day 17

Because of a medical situation with one of the passengers, on November 23rd the ship headed towards the South Shetland Islands, where there are a number of research stations and an aircraft landing strip.



On the way the ship stopped at tiny Half Moon Island, one of the islands in the South Shetlands.

Argentina's Camara research station on Half Moon Island
It was unoccupied when we passed early in the morning.


The island has a Chinstrap Penguin nesting colony.  The Penguins had recently started to return for this year and much of their nesting ground was still covered by snow.



These penguins build nests out of small stones and pebbles which they bring from the beach (and frequently steal from their neighbors).


This is a short video of penguins climbing the hillside to reach their nesting grounds.



Some colorful lichens at an otherwise black-and-white location.



Later that day we arrived at the Bellingshausen Station on King George Island.  This research station was founded by the USSR and is now operated by Russia.  This is where we dropped off the passenger who would be flying home for medical treatment.


Like all Antarctic stations, this one was a long way from anywhere.


This station is known for having the southernmost Eastern Orthodox Church.





A seal watching us walk by



Right next to Russia's Bellingshausen Station is Chile's Frei Montalva Station.


The Chilean station has a few families.  When they heard we were coming, the children had a baked goods sale waiting for us!



A view of both stations from the Eastern Orthodox church


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