The morning saw us still in the Drake, but it has calmed down considerably and we experienced a very smooth Drake Passage with a low but long wave swell. The sun was shining the whole day and there were only a few clouds. The temperature of the sea water has dropped to 3 – 4 ° C. We passed the Antarctic Convergence in the early morning. This convergence separates the cool Antarctic waters from the warmer waters of the Atlantic, Pacific and Indian Oceans. This line is also an important ecological boundary. To the North we have the sub-Antarctic regime and to the south we see Antarctic wildlife. So also the bird species following our ship changed. We could observe only some few albatrosses and close to the South Shetland Islands they disappeared. Instead we had more Giant Petrels, Southern Fulmars and swarms of Cape Petrels were dancing in the air around the Fram.
At 13.00 we saw the first Iceberg and soon after we sighted land, the South Shetland Islands. At 15.45 some Whales passed by and at 16.00 finally we arrived at our first landing site in the Antarctic: Half Moon Island.
Our friends the noisy chinstrap penguins were still there, busy as always coming from and going to the sea. Also three Weddell Seals were hauling out at the beach.
At the end of our visit around 20.00 some more clouds came up, hiding a part of the sun and produced dramatic scenery in the sky to say good bye to us. During Dinner we heaved anchor and sailed towards our next destination Cuverville Island.
MV FRAM is the most modern expedition cruise vessel belonging to the Hurtigrutenfleet, roaming the polar waters and taking people to remote places where only few people go. In order to give you the chance to travel with us, even if only on your screen, we created this blog. Here you can see what we have seen and read what we have done. And - maybe - you will be onboard with us one day.
The expedition team consists of lecturers from various fields and backgrounds: ornithologists, mammalogists, historians, and geologists, ready to tackle all your questions. Together with the crew onboard we make your time on board REALLY worthwhile!