Dramatis persona*

helenhead Helen Chick

I've always wanted a bumper sticker that said "I'm a female, LDS/Mormon, Scout leading, geocaching, piano-playing, bicycling, mathematics educator with a PhD in maths ... and I VOTE"!

I think this makes me a minority group of cardinality 1!

* Since there's only one of me and "personae" is plural (I think), I've gone with dramatis persona.
January 2016
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BT – Around Port Charcot

Our destination for the morning was Port Charcot (S 65°03.9′ W 64°01.5′), a bay on the northwest side of Booth Island. Here we went ashore and saw — wait for it — more penguins!

We also had a good view of the melting sea ice to the south.

Most of the penguins were Gentoos yet again (as in […]

BT – Cruising the Lemaire Channel

I remember being impressed as we spent the first part of our fourth Antarctic morning cruising the Lemaire Channel (S 65°3′ W 63°54′), but selecting the photos to include here reminded me just how awesomely stunning it was.

I am not entirely sure which route we took (in fact, I think we may have turned back from […]

BT – A night out

Shortly after 9pm on the evening of day 3 in Antarctica, a group of 30 or so of us found ourselves standing on the shore looking at the Plancius, and reflecting on the comfort of our cabins. Tonight it was our turn for a night on the ice. This was one of the things I had […]

BT – Waterboat Point/González Videla Base

In the afternoon we went ashore at Waterboat Point, site for Antarctica’s smallest ever wintering party comprising just two men, who decided to stay for a winter to study the penguins by improvising a hut from an old boat, back in the 1920s. Almost an island, it is now the site of Chile’s González Videla Base (S […]

BT – Neko Harbour

Neko Harbour (S 64°51′ W 62°36′) is a big inlet, so big, in fact, that I haven’t been able to pinpoint the exact spot where we landed on our third morning. My geographical incompetence is not helped by the fact that the current Google maps satellite imagery must be from the wintrier ends of summer, since […]

BT – A Magical Evening

The evening began — perhaps surprisingly to those who see Antarctica as a wild, wintry place — with a barbecue outside on the aft deck. The weather was mild, there was a convivial atmosphere, and the antics of Nacho (Ignacio) — the Argentinian camping leader who took us on our overnight sleep out — kept people […]

BT – Claytons Mountaineering

In addition to kayaking trips — and the standard trips ashore and Zodiac cruises — our tour offered mountaineering activities. For those with proper boots these could be quite adventurous, with crampons and the like, but they also organised some Claytons* mountaineering trips of a more gentle nature that could be conducted using our Muck boots […]

BT – Paradise Harbour and Almirante Brown Base

If I tell you that I took over 400 photos on day 2 in Antarctica you can probably guess that it was a magical day; and you may not be surprised to find that I’ll break up the account into three posts. We spent the morning in the vicinity of Paradise Harbour (S 64°54′ W 62°53′), […]

BT – Place and proportion

Antarctica is big. Really big. You just won’t believe how vastly, hugely, mind-bogglingly big it is. I mean, you may think it’s a long way down the road to the chemist, … *

Although I had loaded some maps of Antarctica onto my phone, I didn’t really get a sense of perspective from these, nor were they detailed […]

BT – Kayaking near Danco Island

One of the things I had been really looking forward to doing in Antarctica was undertaken on our first afternoon. Over lunch we had moved further south to Danco Island (S64°44′ W62°36′), and it was here that we were scheduled to go kayaking. [On this trip about 96 of the passengers wanted to go kayaking, and […]