2024.25 Epic Antarctica BA

after the first sitting head of state to visit the Antarctic continent. When the base is manned, you may be welcomed inside for a visit by the base personnel, or you may visit the resident nesting gentoo rookery if the base is inactive. South Shetland Islands AITCHO ISLANDS This group of small islands is situated in the northern entrance of the English Strait. You can often spot a great mix of wildlife in the area, with gentoo and chinstrap penguins having established rookeries on the islands. Southern elephant and fur seals frequently haul out here, too. DECEPTION ISLAND Deception Island is a flooded circular caldera formed by the collapse of an active volcano. To reach this protected harbor, it is necessary to sail through a narrow passage called Neptune’s Bellows. Inside are several bays used at various times for whaling and scientific research. Along with waddling penguins and

possibly lounging seals, you’ll see the rusting remains of whaling operations on the beach in some locations. The landscape of Deception Island often presents opportunities for longer walks to striking vistas. The stark contrast between snow and dark volcanic sand and the steam along the shoreline from geothermic activity when the tide is right, gives this location an atmospheric feel.

Pardo Villalon, can be seen within the chinstrap penguin colony at Point Wild. Conditions here can make shore landings rare, but we hope to spot this historic island from Zodiacs or the ship. HALF MOON ISLAND This crescent-shaped island was known to sealers as early as 1821. While they tried to keep this productive location secret, we’re happy to bring you ashore on this impressive island. Many Antarctic birds breed here, including chinstrap penguins, shags, Wilson’s storm petrels, kelp gulls, snowy sheathbills, Antarctic terns and skuas. HANNAH POINT On the southern coast of Livingston Island at Hannah Point, you may see chinstrap and gentoo penguin rookeries, along with the occasional breeding macaroni penguin. Due to the rather congested area available to the nesting penguins, we are able to visit here only after January 10.

ELEPHANT ISLAND Elephant Island is a site of great

historical significance as Shackleton’s party beached here after the Endurance sank in the Weddell Sea. Twenty-two of Shackleton’s men remained here, living under a lifeboat, while ‘the Boss’ and five companions took to the James Caird and sailed for South Georgia. The stranded party, led by Frank Wild (for whom Point Wild is named), kept all the men alive. On August 30, 1916, 137 days later, Shackleton returned to rescue his men with the Chilean vessel Yelcho . A bronze bust of the Yelcho ’s Captain, Luis

Call your Travel Professional or a Quark Polar Travel Adviser at 1.888.892.0073 | Visit QuarkExpeditions.com for additional details


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