Our good fortune continued as the Fram motored along in nearly flat seas. On our way southward, we attended the required briefings where we learned the regulations established by the International Association of Antarctic Tour Operators (IAATO). Most importantly we need to remember to stay 5 meters or 15 feet distant from our new friends.
Copyright Anke Timmerberg
Excitement increased in the afternoon as we were fitted for our boots and prepared for our first landing at Half Moon Island. Our first polarCirkle boat ride to shore was a new experience for us but soon we will be old hands at leaving the Fram and riding ashore and getting in and out of the polarCirkle boats. The landing at Half Moon Island was in smooth waters and the Expedition Leader briefed us as to our time ashore and directed us to the pathways that had been set out by the Expedition staff.
Up the hill from the landing site and we were in a very active colony of Chinstrap penguins. It seemed as though 100’s of molting chicks were wandering about clamoring for their parents to return and feed them. Some of us walked over the ridge to the other side of the island were we were met by 40 to 50 fur seals, more Chinstrap penguins and a few Adelie penguins. Skua gulls, Snowy sheathbills and the occasional Antarctic tern circled the penguin rookeries. Overall today was a much better day than yesterday for the bird-watchers among us.
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!