Saturday 28 December 2013

Clear Sailing

Today has been a beautiful day with bright sun, blue skies and calm sea conditions. Not a whitecap in sight all day long, just some gentle ocean swells. We are clear of South Georgia Island and on our way to Elephant Island.

Today was filled with lectures and films. Our fellow travelers from OYAs VENNER, the Friends of South Georgia offered several lectures today, some in Norwegian and others in English. Perhaps the most unique presentation was the running commentary provided by Kjell Tokstad as he showed us the 8mm film he shot when we spent 2 summers and 1 winter at the whaling stations on South Georgia. It was the early 1960’s and he was 15 years old when he went south. 

This first-hand information and experience continued in the evening as 8 of the OYAs VENNER members answered questions from the audience about their time working in Antarctica, some at the land stations while others worked on factory ships. All were quite young when they came south for work.   

After dinner the FRAM encountered a large pod of migrating fin whales. For about a half an hour we watched with amazement and joy as 50 to 100 of these large creatures surfaced some within 15 meters of the FRAM.