Thursday 31 December 2009

Blue moon in the Scotia Sea

Today all day sailing on the Scotia Sea – luckily we experienced calm seas with gentle swells and no wind. The passengers had tours of the bridge, where we learned the intricate inner workings of our vessel. Captain Hansen patiently answered questions for several hours. Large tabular icebergs appeared on the horizon, many of them followed by a trail of smaller chunks of ice. This indicated we are getting close to the white continent.

Many seabirds followed the Fram, including stately albatross soaring on outstretched wings, smaller pintado petrels, fulmars, antarctic prions and the Antarctic petrel. Bird watching was conducted on the upper decks. Also, today was a blue moon – only experienced every two to three years. This is two full moons in one calendar month. We were lucky to witness this unique lunar phenomenon here in the Scotia Sea.

The afternoon continued with various lectures about the geology, history and biology of the southern ocean and Antarctica. In the evening, we celebrated New Year´s Eve, this the very last day of 2009. A big Happy New Year to our many friends and families back home!