What a great surprise when everyone saw a young Emperor penguin on an ice floe during the morning zodiac tour.
Like statues on an ice floe, two Adelie penguins watch us as we pass by in a zodiac.
A leopard seal raises up to see what is going on as a zodiac full of red-coated passengers cruise by!
A strikingly blue iceberg captivates all those who were lucky enough to see it.
Adelie penguins rest on an ice floe in the Weddell Sea as the Le Boreal drifts in the distance during our zodiac tour.
Erebus and Terror Gulf
The day dawned calm and bright. Not that it ever gets really dark in summer in these latitudes! Le Boreal steaming out of Antarctic Sound and into Erebus and Terror Gulf at the top of the Weddell Sea.
The plan was to go ashore on Paulet Island where the crew of the Antarctic wintered in 1903 after their ship had been crushed by the ice. Although the weather conditions were good for landing, there was too much floating ice piled up along the shore at the landing place. Le Boreal circled the island to search for better conditions but none were forthcoming so a zodiac cruise was arranged. This consists of an hour's trip in a zodiac to see the sights. Although a little chilly, it was a marvellous experience to be taken among the ice floes and remnants of icebergs. There were seals and penguins to observe at close quarters and, best of all, one proved to be an immature emperor penguin. There is a colony some 50 miles south and this is the time of year that the young birds are leaving the colony and drifting off on icefloes.
Another attempt was made to land on Paulet Island, then Captain Lemaire took Le Boreal across Terror and Erebus Gulf in search of another landing place. It was a great experience to see the ship being worked through the ice floes which, at times, were fairly closely packed.
The destination was Brown Bluffs on the mainland of the Antarctic Peninsula where there is a large colony of Adélie penguins. Unfortunately conditions were against us again. Ice prevented the ship coming within two miles of the shore and also made landing hazardous. Expedition Leader Larry had tried everything to get us a landing today but Antarctica was showing that it is not to be taken for granted. It was nevertheless a good experience. The pack ice cruise and the emperor penguin had made it a memorable day.