Saturday, 17 January 2009

Northwards across the Drake Passage 14/01/2009

Day 18 Wednesday January 14th 2009

Northwards across the Drake passage and into rough seas. Last night we had to Drake proof the cabin which means ensuring that everything is low down and cannot fall on to us and also that sick bags are nearby. We have not only our own tablets but also the Doctor's extra strength tablets.

Breakfast was 30 minutes later this morning, reasonably well attended with few people commenting on sea sickness although we are all feeling very tired from the doping effects of the tablets and probably the exertions of the last 8 days on land.

This morning's lectures were on finalising your photo albums and glacier origin and history. This afternoon there was a very interesting lecture on Scott and Amundsen.

We are sailing direct for Ushuaia now, directly into a strong headwind which means the sea is not too rough. Even so, everyone walking around the ship has gone back to rough sea walk mode - legs wide apart, bottom low, holding on to handrails whenever possible.

The longer term weather forecast for us seems to indicate that the Drake Passage is going to be no more than a heavy swell. We are making about 11 knots and the headwind strength is only 11 m/s so with any luck, the next 36 hours will be bearable.

Sunset 2200 hrs Drake Passage

Sunset over the Drake Passage 2200 hrs

The after dinner talk was on bird wing spans. The span of the Wandering Albatross is amazing - 10 feet is typical (below are Northern Giant and Southern Ocean Petrels the larger of which have spans typically 8 feet).

Northern Giant Petral (1)

Northern Giant Petral (2)

Souther Ocean (2)

Southern Ocean (1)

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