Abercrombie & Kent Travel Logs

Read about the experiences of Abercrombie & Kent travellers in their own words, and learn what makes an A&K journey so uniquely satisfying.

01 12.21.13 Crew Welfare chart
Classic Antarctica

December 21, 2013 – Drake Passage and Beagle Channel

The weather continued gray and the sea was still fairly calm as the lecture program continued with Marine Biologist Jim McClintock’s talk entitled, “Drug Discoveries in Antarctic Seas.” Jim went into detail about the chemical defenses that many marine organisms use against their predators and how some of these chemicals have properties that may [...]

01 12.20.13 Dr Jim McClintock
Classic Antarctica

December 20, 2013 – Crossing the Drake Passage

According to Captain Garcia, nothing would slow our progress across the Drake Passage until we got into the lee of land in the Beagle Channel. In reality, though, he could not resist slowing down for a good view of seven fin whales that passed close by, their tall blows showing rainbow colors in the [...]

01 12.19.13 Almirante Brown Station
Classic Antarctica

December 19, 2013 – Paradise Harbour, Brown Station and Melchior Islands

In the early morning, ‘Le Boreal’ entered Paradise Harbour, one of the most visually stunning regions of the Antarctic Peninsula, and anchored off the Argentine Brown Station (formerly Almirante Brown), named for an Irishman who established the Argentine Navy. A short Zodiac ride brought us to the cluster of orange buildings. Though it was now [...]

01 12.18.13 Lemaire Channel
Classic Antarctica

December 18, 2013 – Lemaire Channel, Petermann Island and Port Circumcision

To demonstrate that this is an expedition rather than a standard cruise, today had its share of uncertainty and changing plans. Under gray overcast skies and with little wind, ‘Le Boreal made a slow, weaving passage through 5/10ths pack ice, a measurement that suggests approximately 50% of the surface area was covered in ice. [...]

01 12.17.13 Cuverville Island
Classic Antarctica

December 17, 2013 – Cuverville Island and Neko Harbour

It was another bright day as ‘Le Boreal’ steamed south down the Antarctic Peninsula whose icy mountains could be seen off the port side. The sea was pleasantly calm and the air, without any wind and under bright sunshine, amazingly warm. Captain Garcia took ‘Le Boreal’ into the very scenic Errera Channel en route to [...]

01 12.16.13 Brilliantly beautiful day at Half Moon Is!
Classic Antarctica

December 16, 2013 – Half Moon Island and Deception Island

What an amazing morning! The sun was shining from a blue sky and there was scarcely a breath of wind as we went ashore on Half Moon Island, a small island nestled within Moon Bay of Livingston Island, all of which are part of the South Shetland Islands. A short trudge up a compacted path [...]

01 12.15.13 Fat Leopard Seal
Classic Antarctica

December 15, 2013 – Antarctic Sound and Brown Bluff

The weather seemed to turn a corner today and we welcomed patches of blue sky and intervals of sunshine. Small icebergs were scattered over the sea and Cape petrels glided up and down the sides of ‘Le Boreal,’ riding the waves of a chilly breeze. The air temperature was about 28 degrees Fahrenheit. Soon [...]

01 12.14.13 Birds in Tuxedos lecture
Classic Antarctica

December 14, 2013 – South Shetland Islands and the Chinese Antarctic Great Wall Station

This morning revealed falling snow, and just enough for a few snowball fights before breakfast. The South Shetland Islands — ice-clad Nelson Island and Robert Island — appeared out of the gloom by mid-morning, marking our first glimpse of Antarctica. A layer of low cloud obscured the mountain peaks but the glaciers could be [...]

01 12.13.13 Boot & Parka exchange
Classic Antarctica

December 13, 2013 – At Sea – Drake Passage, En Route to Antarctica

As the knowledgeable, but rather pessimistic, members of the Expedition Staff predicted, ‘Le Boreal’ did roll a bit after we came out from the Beagle Channel into the open sea of the Drake Passage, but this was in the early hours when we were safely tucked up in bed. The most common problem was [...]

01 01 12.12.13 Ushuaia dock
Classic Antarctica

December 12, 2013 – Ushuaia, Argentina

Our arrival in Argentina at the port of Ushuaia — the “City at the End of the World” — marked the start of our exciting journey south. Located on the archipelago of Tierra del Fuego, Ushuaia is home to approximately 45,000 inhabitants and, although growing rapidly, has still managed to maintain its frontier-town atmosphere. [...]

Breakfast (2)
Classic Antarctica

December 18, 2012 – at sea/Beagle Channel, on route to Ushuaia

Enjoying a leisurely breakfast, our gaze fixed upon the buzz of activity outside, we reminisced about the last several days, grateful for the emotional high we would carry with us on our journeys home and beyond. We had come from many corners of the globe, all strangers with a common interest.  But this morning [...]

Southern Fulmar
Classic Antarctica

December 17, 2012 – Drake Passage, on route to Ushuaia

We were once again plying the waters of the dreaded Drake Passage, though we could not be convinced of its reputation. As it had been during our journey south, we awoke only to the slightest of movement; you almost had to remind yourself you were on a ship. Even though there were some among us [...]

Lemaire
Classic Antarctica

December 16, 2012 – Petermann Island/Neko Harbour, Antarctica

Having remained north of the Lemaire Channel overnight, Captain Garcia turned south to complete our transit just after 0500 this morning. The clouds remained, but the snow stopped and made it possible for us top steal some amazing views. One view, however, was of a channel choked with ice, and there was some doubt about [...]

Palmer Station
Classic Antarctica

December 15, 2012 – Palmer Station, Antarctica

We had spent a pleasant night swinging lazily on the anchor chain in Port Lockroy. Just before 0600, ‘Le Boreal’ lifted the anchor and set off the short distance towards Palmer Station and the day’s activities. Arriving just after eight, we took a short Zodiac tour of the islands around Palmer Station. Torgerson Island was [...]

Gentoo in zodiac
Classic Antarctica

December 14, 2012 – Enterprise Island/Cuverville Island, Antarctica

Not wanting to miss anything, many of us woke early to watch the magical world of black, white and magnificent blues that surrounded us. Cruising south and deeper into the peninsula, the mountains stretched into the clouds, their tops obscured and mysterious. We could hardly wait for our Zodiac tour this morning. ‘Le Boreal’ slowed [...]

Supply vessel
Classic Antarctica

December 13, 2012 – Halfmoon Island/Deception Island, Antarctica

Although the “weather people” were wrong to promise sunny skies this morning, we would not be disappointed. Even with cloudy conditions and falling snow, we had reasonable temperatures, little-to-no wind, and the magnificent White Continent before us. With our earliest start to this point in our voyage, we boarded the Zodiacs for Halfmoon Island [...]

1st cruise
Classic Antarctica

December 12, 2012 – Antarctic Sound/Brown Bluff

Those of us awake early this morning were not sure what kind of day was in store. Winds were reaching 20 knots and the sleet was coming down. But then, like a switch at 0600, the sleet stopped and the winds died. The sun began to peek through the clouds to the Southeast and [...]

Decktime
Classic Antarctica

December 11, 2012 – Drake Passage, on route to Antarctica

The famed Drake Passage had transformed overnight, from that of a millpond to a lake. It seemed as though those in charge of the weather still had everything under control and we couldn’t have dreamed of a better crossing towards Antarctica. The excitement of the day began before we even had time to wipe [...]

Parka exchange
Classic Antarctica

December 10, 2012 – Drake Passage, on route to Antarctica

After our first night on board ‘Le Boreal,’ we woke to calm seas. Fortunately for us, the dreaded Drake Passage had not reared its ugly head. Yesterday as we first entered our suites, we were happy to see A&K’s signature red parkas laid out for us on our beds.  This morning our first job [...]

Le Boreal
Classic Antarctica

December 09, 2012 – Ushuaia, Tierra del Fuego, Argentina

After long journeys far and wide, we finally reached the southernmost city in the world and the Capital of Tierra del Fuego, Argentina, Ushuaia — also known as El Fin del Mundo. This is where we would board our ship ‘Le Boreal’ and begin our adventure to the White Continent. We found a city [...]

Stewardesses
Classic Antarctica

December 08, 2012 – Drake Passage/Beagle Channel on route to Ushuaia

It seemed as though our luck was changing on our final day aboard ‘Le Boreal.’ With cloudy skies and increased wind, the Drake Passage had picked up slightly. But after countless perfect days in a row, there were no complaints to be heard around the breakfast table. We kept busy with lectures throughout the [...]

Coffee station
Classic Antarctica

December 07, 2012 – Drake Passage, on route to Ushuaia

The Drake Passage is known as one of the most notorious bodies of water in the world. Fear of crossing it, more specifically, is what prevents so many from coming to experience Antarctica. We, on the other hand, were fortunate to experience little wind and a passage that might instead be dubbed “Drake Lake.” [...]

Grease ice cruising
Classic Antarctica

December 06, 2012 – Port Lockroy/Brown Station, Antarctica

‘Le Boreal’ was brought into position late last evening and we spent the night swinging lazily on the anchor chain. Our backdrop: the 9,000-plus-foot Mount Francis and the razor spine of the Fief Mountains of Wienke Island. Surrounded on all sides by these magnificent giants was our landing in Port Lockroy, Goudier Island and [...]

Boots
Classic Antarctica

December 05, 2012 – Vernadskiy Station/Petermann Island, Antarctica

We pulled the drapes in our suites back and, once again, found bright blue skies. We really had great weather on our side. Having traversed the Lemaire Channel last night, ‘Le Boreal’ slowed to a crawl through the early morning hours. Just before 0800, Captain Garcia brought the vessel into position off of the [...]

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