For a long time I have wanted to travel to the Antarctic region and photograph the amazing wildlife, I never thought the opportunity would present itself. In Oct 2016 I suddenly had the time and there was an available trip leaving in 2 weeks. After a storm of activity, I was on my way to Ushuaia, the most southerly city in the world, to catch a Quark expedition ship to the Falklands, South Georgia and Antarctica.
It was an incredible trip with lots of wildlife, landscapes and good company. Here are a small selection of images that I took on the trip. They are grouped by geographical location.
Below is the map of route we took as we traveled to the different islands and ultimately to the Antarctic Peninsula.
Our first stop was at the Falkland Islands, visiting the Black-browed Albatross and the Rockhopper Penguins. We then traveled to South Georgia Island, were the King Penguins ruled, guarded on the beaches by the aggressive Antarctic Fur Seals and lethargic Elephant Seals. On our way to Antarctic we made a steam by viewing of the South Orkneys, due to rough weather we were unable to visit.
As we headed to the Antarctic Peninsula the icebergs appeared in greater numbers. They became ever larger and more intimidating. The locals, Gentoo, Chinstrap and Adélie Penguins could often be seen going for a ride on the backs of the icebergs as we steamed by. The Weddell, Crabeater and Leopard seals appeared to prefer the smaller sea ice.
The final leg of our journey took the ship across the feared Drake Passage. Luckily we caught 'Drake' napping and it was calm all the way... no 'I survived the Drake Passage' shirt for me.
Video is a great way to capture the sounds and the flow of these locations. A fellow passenger, Ed Grimer, put together a video of the expedition. This can be viewed here.