karohemd: by LJ user gothindulgence (You lookin at me?)
Scott/Shackleton penguin blackboard sketches found in Cambridge Uni basement

The one on the right is immediately recognisable as an Adelie because of the head shape and the other is probably a King because of the long slender beak.
(thanks to [livejournal.com profile] the_elyan for the link)
karohemd: by LJ user gothindulgence (You lookin at me?)
karohemd: (Photo)

I've included a number of my best penguin shots in my pro gallery on photobox. So if you ever wanted a penguin on your wall, now you can:

karohemd: by LJ user gothindulgence (Me antarctica)
or anybody else who's bored.

I'm currenlty watching the fence of the building site next door being slowly obliterated (three panels are now missing) by the wind and am amazed that the flag poles are still standing and the flags are still attached.
Cambourne seems to be a bit worse off as [livejournal.com profile] redshira's roof is losing tiles.

To cheer you all up a bit, have some new penguin photos:

 

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karohemd: by LJ user gothindulgence (Default)

So I've joined YouTube to bring you some moving highlights of my trip.


Note: This was taken with my little Fuji compact which only has a display which I couldn't see at all in the glare. Having no viewfinder sucks. :o(
I'll probably edit this a bit to leave only the more interesting bits in but I don't think it's too bad so far.

More to come.
karohemd: (Photo)

Brown Bluff with its huge colony of Adelie penguins was the best of the landings. The penguins' antics were just hilarious to watch.

 
  

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There are still a few photos to come from Argentina before I restart but that won't be before next week as I'll be busy every evening.
karohemd: (Photo)

From "Drake Lake" (it was so calm) to King George Island and Greenwich Island. Some of the photos are linked to a map from the relevant flickr page (click on a big pic). Too bad the resolution isn't very good for Antarctica. Not even Google Earth has decent satellite images.

 
 
 


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karohemd: by LJ user gothindulgence (Default)
Just before we left Andvord Bay, we spotted a family (mother and calf) of whales coming rather close to the ship. Wonderful. Yet, the wonders weren't supposed to end there.

The destination for the day was Port Lockroy, one of the oldest research stations in Antarctica. It used to be run by the British Antarctic Survey but is now run by an independent fund. The weather continued to be gorgeous and I spent most of the time on deck enjoying the scenery and of course take a few photos. My group was last to land but being as far South as we are, it was still bright daylight. The Gentoo Penguins there are completely used to humans and build their nests almost on the steps of the station. Many of them had chicks and I got a lucky shot of an egg that had just began to hatch, with a little hole and the tiny beak visible in it. The main building had been rebuilt part as a museum displaying old equipment which provided a glimpse into the early scientists' lives. I bought another badge for my jacket and took various photos of Gentoo Penguins and Sheathbills which will grab very small chicks if the parents aren't careful but otherwise live off scraps and guano.

Back on the ship, there was another big buffet, this one meditterannean style so lots of yummy food. While we were eating, we spotted Santa Claus and his elfpenguin on one of the big rocks. He was then picked up by one of our boats and brought on board.

After dinner, I spent more time on deck, walking around a bit to work off the plentiful dinner. I'll be going back after writing this and wait for the sunset which promises to come but not before midnight.

Oh and YAY, White Christmas tomorrow!

What a beautiful day, the best early Christmas present I could think of.
karohemd: by LJ user gothindulgence (Default)

The internet cafe wasn't open last night so I couldn't update. Sorry about that.
I also can't upload photos which is a pity as I have some awesome shots already...

Brief update: Yesterday we flew to Punta Arenas and then took a bus to the Otway Sound with its colony of Magellanic Penguins. Awesome, just utterly awesome. The pengs don't really care about the humans walking around the wooden bridge/path or they actually know that they're being watched and pose for the camera. I've got a number of really cool photos. The light was OK (cloudy but not raining) so good enough to take reasonable photos. The only pity was that we only had an hour and a bit there while I could easily have spent a whole day.
Also seen: a fricking huge condor (from afar, no photo), several Karakaras, male Nandus and their offspring, Grey Eagles and various other birds big and small.
Back to Punto Arenas and check in at the ship, i.e. more queuing and waiting. Have a wonderful and comfy cabin, the food is good and plentiful (I'm not going to lose weight on this trip...) and the weather has been quiet so far.

Today, we first came up to Tucker Island where Magellanic Penguins and (King) Kormorans nest. Was very lucky to get a cool shot of a Kormoran in flight. *smug* Also seen: Dolfins, Skua and other sea birds.
Later, we went through the St. Gabriel Channel, with the Violetta Glacier (blue ice on top, rock with many many waterfalls beneath, Southern Beech woods at the bottom). It was very windy but not too cold and the sea is nice and calm.

More tonight.
karohemd: by LJ user gothindulgence (Duftkaese)

Penguin Man

(YouTube link)
karohemd: by LJ user gothindulgence (Beer)
Left at about 12:15 as all Central trains to Stansted had been canceled and I had to take the long train via Bishop's Stortford. Got to the airport with plenty of time to spare, only to find out that my flight had been rescheduled to 15 minutes later.
Just as I was about to go through security my mum phoned to say that they had arrived safely from the Antarctic. Yay!
Killed time by browsing around the shops, having lunch at the seafood bar, almost buying a ticket to win that gorgeous DB9 (which was lovely but had a very wrong colour) and reading Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrel.
Boarding was delayed as well but the flight itself was uneventful.
Met parents who had a lovely tan and had not only a fantastic time but fantastic weather, too, and PENGUINS! My mum said "We were only allowed to get within five metres of them". Only! I would have been happy with 50 metres! [livejournal.com profile] silja and [livejournal.com profile] robinbloke, you really need to do this, the official Antartic passport stamp has penguins on it, too.
The drive home was slow as some parts were quite snowy but we got home safely at around 9:30 local time.
Chatting about the Antarctic and general catching up while munching on gingerbread.
First proper day of holiday tomorrow!

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