Monday, 01 February 2010 13:39
Published in Education News

A few weeks before Christmas a member of the expedition team was invited to talk to the students of 'Our Lady of the Wayside' primary school in Kiltiernan in Dublin. The North Pole team were out in Canada training so Niall Foley travelled up to give a short presentation on the Antarctic and South Georgia.

With so many kids in attendence Niall decided to bring some props as follows: Down Sleeping Bag, Thermal Sleeping Mat, Rucksack, Winter Expedition Boots, Crampons, Ice Axe and Harness.

"After a lovely welcome I was thrilled to see that the school had the corridors covered in Antarctic and Ice project work, Sharon Kelly of the PALC had mentioned it was this years theme for the school, brilliant idea!"

Mrs Duckenfield would have been the driving force behind the Antarctica Project in the school. Also, our Acting Principal is Mrs Burns (while Ms. Corcoran is on maternity leave) and the talk was given to all classes from 2nd class up to 6th class. The Parents Associations Library Committee, in conjunction with Mrs Duckenfield decorated the School Library / Corridor and each class made something to display during Art.

All the kids entered the hall and were very excited. Niall spoke a bit on History first as a starting point, raising questions to the kids ever so often. With a slideshow behind him he then displayed some fantastic colour images of South Georgia and training for doing the crossing, not to mention the many different types of penguins and seals. The excitment rose further when Niall was speaking about Pat and the South Pole trip, he displayed some great images of Freddy T Bear pulling a sled and skiing. Once he finished up a little later Niall produced freddy out of his rucksack and there was mayhem!! The kids couldn't believe Freddy had also come to their school. A few photos later and there was a big thank you to Niall for coming along with his stories and expedition gear. Each class getting a chance to hold freddy's paw on the way out back to their classes.

Niall mentioned "It was a great day, I was a little nervous when I arrived but when I walked up the hallways to see the great project and artwork on the walls it was like I was back in the Antarctic. The kids were brilliant, and we hope they keep up their interest in the Antarctic and the Arctic especially as Freddy is heading up with the Irish North Pole team soon. Bravo to the Teachers, staff and PALC for keeping the kids minds alive with great activities like these projects, I'm sure the extra effort will go along way... Some of the kids sent me lovely letters, it was really nice to read each one and what they learned from my visit."

 

www.patfalvey.com

 

Friday, 29 January 2010 18:06
Published in Arctic/Antarctica

Antarctica

  • Classic Antarctica

  • Classic South Georgia

  • Polar Circle Quest

  • Polar Circle Quest

  • The USHUAIA

  • Dates & Rates

Trip: Classic Antarctica

 
Route: Expedition cruise to the Antarctic Peninsula & South Shetland Islands. Aboard the USHUAIA


Duration: 11 Days aboard plus travel time


PLEASE CONTACT US FOR MORE DETAILS AND AVAILABLE DATES

 

Visit the last pristine region of the world. Our Classic voyage is the ultimate introduction to the White Continent.

Itinerary:

*Day 1: Depart from Ushuaia

Embark the USHUAIA in the afternoon and meet your expedition and lecture staff. After you have settled into your cabins we sail along the famous Beagle Channel and the scenic Mackinlay Pass.

*Day 2 & 3: Crossing the Drake Passage

Named after the renowned explorer, Sir Francis Drake, who sailed these waters in 1578, the Drake Passage also marks the Antarctic Convergence, a biological barrier where cold polar water sinks beneath the warmer northern waters. This creates a great upwelling of nutrients, which sustains the biodiversity of this region. The Drake Passage also marks the northern limit of many Antarctic seabirds.

As we sail across the passage, Antarpply Expeditions' lecturers will be out with you on deck to help in the identification of an amazing variety of seabirds, including many albatrosses, which follow in our wake. The USHUAIA's open bridge policy allows you to join our officers on the bridge and learn about navigation, watch for whales, and enjoy the view. A full program of lectures will be offered as well.

The first sightings of icebergs and snow-capped mountains indicate that we have reached the South Shetland Islands, a group of twenty islands and islets first sighted in February 1819 by Capt. William Smith of the brig Williams. With favorable conditions in the Drake Passage our lecturers and naturalists will accompany you ashore as you experience your first encounter with the penguins and seals on Day 3.

*Day 4 to 8: Exploring the Antarctic Peninsula and the South Shetland Islands

The South Shetland Islands are a haven for wildlife. Vast penguin rookeries, beaches ruled by Antarctic fur seals and Southern elephant seals make every day spent in this amazing island group unforgettable. Sailing through the narrow passage into the flooded caldera of Deception Island is truly amazing.
King George Island, the largest of the South Shetland Islands, features colonies of nesting Adélie and Chinstrap Penguins, Kelp Gulls, Blue-eyed Cormorants, Antarctic Terns and Southern Giant Petrels and is home to scientific bases of many different countries. Macaroni, Chinstrap and Gentoo Penguins as well as elephant seals await you at Livingston Island.

The Antarctic Peninsula’s remarkable history will provide you with a type of excitement often only associated with the early explorers. You will have plenty of time to explore its amazing scenery, a pristine wilderness of snow, ice, mountains and waterways, and an incredible wide variety of wildlife. Apart from penguins and seabirds you are very likely to see Weddell, crabeater and leopard seals as well as Minke, killer (orca) and humpback whales at close range.

We hope to navigate some of the most beautiful waterways (depending on the ice conditions): the Gerlache Strait, the Neumayer Channel, and the Lemaire Channel, the latter are narrow passages between towering rock faces and spectacular glaciers.

We plan to make at least two landings per day and possible landing sites may include:
Paradise Bay is perhaps the most aptly named place in the world and we attempt a landing on the continent proper. After negotiating the iceberg-strewn waters of the Antarctic Sound, we hope to visit the bustling Adélie Penguin (over 100,000 pairs breed here) and Blue-eyed Cormorant colonies on Paulet Island. The Nordenskjöld expedition built a stone survival hut here in 1903. Today its ruins have been taken over by nesting penguins.

Further exploration may take you to Melchior Island, Cuverville Island, Portal Point, Neko Harbour, Pléneau Island and if ice conditions permit, to Petermann Island for a visit to the southernmost colony of Gentoo Penguins.

*Day 9 & 10: At Sea crossing the Drake Passage, northbound

We leave Antarctica and head north across the Drake Passage. Join our lecturers and naturalists on deck as we search for seabirds and whales and enjoy some final lectures. Take the chance to relax and reflect on the fascinating adventures of the past days on the way back to Ushuaia.

*Day 11: Arrival in Ushuaia

We arrive at the port of Ushuaia in the early morning and disembark the USHUAIA after breakfast.

classic antarctica trip map

 

Please note: The above itinerary is a guide only. Our exact route and program will vary to take best advantage of local weather and ice conditions and opportunities to view wildlife. Changes will be made by the Captain and/or Expedition Leader to facilitate the best results from the prevailing conditions. A daily program sheet will be issued on board. Flexibility is the key to success.

 

Trip: Classic South Georgia

 
Route: Expedition cruise to the Falkland Islands (Malvinas), South Georgia, Antarctic Peninsula & South Shetland Islands. Aboard the USHUAIA


Duration: 20 Days aboard plus travel time


PLEASE CONTACT US FOR MORE DETAILS AND AVAILABLE DATES

 

A truly memorable trip to the Falkland Islands (Malvinas) and South Georgia. Amazing wildlife, spectacular scenery and the fascinating history of the early explorers.

Itinerary:

*Day 1: Ushuaia

In the afternoon we will board the USHUAIA. A welcome drink and then an introduction to the crew and expedition staff will follow, and we will have time to get to know our new shipmates. The ship will then set sail towards the Western Falkland Islands (Malvinas), known for their rugged beauty and wealth of seabirds and waterfowl.

*Day 2: At Sea

The open bridge policy on the USHUAIA allows us to join the officers on the bridge and learn about navigation, watch for marine life, and enjoy the views of the open ocean. These waters are also home to an interesting group of seabirds, which often ride the currents created in the wake of the ship, such as albatrosses and petrels. Join the expedition staff and naturalists on deck whilst we are at sea as we search for seabirds and other local wildlife, such as orcas and dolphins. An interesting selection of lectures will help us to prepare for our first excursions in the Falkland Islands (Malvinas).

*Day 3: Western Falkland Islands (Malvinas)


On the western coast we might visit the following islands:

West Point Island
West Point Island lies off the most north-westerly point of mainland West Falkland (Malvinas). The attractive settlement sits on the edge of a small harbor on the eastern side of the Island, in the lee of Black Bog Hill and Michael´s Mount. The valley between these two peaks rolls over the center of the island to the dramatic Devil´s Nose, one of the Island´s main attractions. From here visitors are treated to splendid views of Cliff Mountain, the Island´s highest point at 1,250 ft (381 m), and the highest cliffs in the Falklands. This is where we will encounter a vast colony of Rockhopper Penguins and Black-browed Albatrosses, nesting together in close vicinity.

Carcass Island
Carcass Island lies to the north-west of the Falkland archipelago (Malvinas). A mature tussac plantation covers much of the lower ground below Jason Hill to the east. The availability of abundant cover and the absence of cats, rats and mice throughout the island have made for a spectacularly large population of small birds, which is one of Carcass Island´s most delightful features. Gentoo and Magellanic Penguins do also nest here. Peale´s and Commerson´s dolphins come frequently close to the shoreline to get a glimpse of the visitors as well. At the settlement with its beautiful gardens, we are invited to enjoy tea and cookies with the locals.

Overnight we will sail around the northern islands of the archipelago in easterly direction to reach the capital, Stanley, in the following morning.

*Day 4: Eastern Falkland Islands (Malvinas) / At Sea

In the morning hours we will have time to explore the quaint little town of Stanley and its wonderful Museum, souvenir shops and pubs. The town was established in the early 1840´s. Isolation and the weather conditions made life hard, but progress was gradual and punctuated by the extremely eventful times of involvement in two world wars. For those who are more interested in the outstanding wildlife the Islands have to offer, you do not even have to leave town to enjoy it. Southern Giant Petrels often fly close to the shoreline. The endemic Falkland Steamer Ducks abound on the shorelines while Kelp Gulls can often be seen flying together with Dolphin Gulls. The less obvious but frequent visitors to Stanley area are Black-crowned Night Herons, Red-backed Hawks and Peregrine Falcons. Turkey Vultures are regularly seen on top of any prominent building. Many pairs of Upland Geese frequent the park and it might be nice to take a stroll around the gardens of town to see some of the singing birds as well.
In the early afternoon it is time to set sail, heading for South Georgia.

*Days 5 & 6: At Sea

An extensive lecture program will be offered during the days at sea. Expert naturalists share their knowledge of the wildlife and unique ecosystems we will encounter throughout our voyage. South Georgia is widely regarded as one of the most beautiful and inspiring places on earth with more wildlife than virtually anywhere else on the planet.

*Day 7: At Sea / South Georgia

South Georgia will come in sight! Though extremely isolated, it has amazing scenery ranging from high mountains and mighty glaciers to deep fjords and low-lying grassland.

*Days 8 to 10: South Georgia

Our exact itinerary will depend on local land and sea conditions but the following destinations are among those that we would like to explore:

Salisbury Plain
Sometimes called the "Serengeti of the South", Salisbury Plain is a wildlife site without parallel. Several large glaciers provide a dramatic backdrop for the tens of thousands of King Penguins that nest in the tussac grass of this remarkable ecosystem. The wide beach makes for excellent walking as we visit the colony, where we are literally surrounded and delightfully outnumbered by throngs of curious, gentle penguins. Elephant and fur seals also abound, as well as Southern Giant Petrels and the occasional wandering Gentoo Penguin. Prepare for an awe-inspiring experience, as the elephant seals are giving birth on the beaches.

Prion Island
Prion Island is a beautiful tussac-grass covered islet. If we are lucky we will get the opportunity to see a breeding colony of Wandering Albatross on top of it. We will climb to the summit on a wooden boardwalk, which takes us close to their nests and offers comfortable viewing platforms.

Grytviken
Grytviken lies within King Edward Cove, a sheltered harbor tucked between Hope Point and Hobart Rock on the western shore of Cumberland East Bay. The rusting ruins of the Grytviken whaling station are situated on a level plain at the head of the cove, backed by steep hills and mountains. Now the site of the South Georgia Museum, the station remains a focal point of interest for many visitors, as does Sir Ernest Shackleton´s grave in the nearby whaler´s cemetery and his memorial cross on Hope Point.

The scenery in this area is exceptionally beautiful even by South Georgia standards: the glaciers and snow covered peaks of the Allardyce Range - Mt. Sugartop, Mt. Paget, Mt. Roots, Nordenskjöld Peak, Mt. Kling and Mt. Brooker - form a magnificent backdrop to the cove, and the views from King Edward Point in particular, must be among the finest on earth.

Godthul
Situated 9km east of Cumberland East Bay on the eastern shores of Barff Peninsula, Godthul is a 3km long inlet that lies between Cape George and Long Point. Gentoo Penguins are abundant on the tussac plateau and Light-mantled Sooty Albatrosses echo off the natural cliff amphitheater that encircles the harbor. A floating factory ship serviced by two whale catchers was stationed here each summer between 1908 and 1929. A small shore depot supporting the whaling operations was established close by the stream in the southeast corner of the harbor, and the rusting barrels, wooden shed and boats are fascinating relics of the whaling era, as is the impressive collection of whale and elephant seal bones scattered along the beach.

St Andrews Bay
The surf beaten coastline at St. Andrews Bay runs north-south in a 1.86 mile (3 km) long uninterrupted sweep of fine dark sand, covered in penguins and seals and bounded in the interior by the Cook, Buxton and Heaney Glaciers. The bay hosts the biggest colony of King Penguins on South Georgia. Early in the season, the beach is also carpeted with fur and elephant seals. Such a large assemblage of wildlife attracts an entourage of persistent and voracious scavengers. Sheathbills dart in and around the penguin colony. Cape Petrels nest in a small number on the cliffs north of St. Andrews Bay. Leopard seals patrol the rocks at this end of the beach too, hunting for penguins along the edge of kelp beds. A few White-chinned Petrels and Light-mantled Sooty Albatrosses nest on the tussac slopes. Brown Skuas and Antarctic Terns breed on the outwash plain and scree slopes at the north end of the beach, defending their nest sites with their characteristic noise and vigor.

Cooper Bay
Cooper Bay is found at the southeast extremity of South Georgia. There is a wealth of wildlife at this site, in a spectacular setting. Chinstrap, Gentoo and maybe one or two Macaroni Penguins dot the tussac slopes and there are plenty of fur seals on the beaches. Fascinating volcanic rocks tower over small fjords, giving a stunning invitation for a thrilling zodiac cruise to watch wildlife from the waterfront.

Drygalski Fjord
Drygalski Fjord is also located in the far south east of the island. The glaciers found in this dramatic fjord have retreated significantly in recent decades, but they still remain one of the most striking features of this coastline, particularly the Risting and Jenkins Glaciers. With a little luck, we might see the glaciers calve and witness the birth of a new iceberg from on board the ship.

*Days 11 & 12: At Sea

We spend the next two days crossing the Scotia Sea towards the Antarctic Peninsula offering opportunities to be out on deck, catch up on some reading, check through and edit our photos, or simply reflect on the magical experiences of the last days on South Georgia. Lectures and other activities will be offered throughout these days.

*Day 13:  Elephant Island, South Shetland Islands

We hope to have a chance to visit the enigmatic Elephant Island. Sir Ernest Shackleton fans will need no introduction to this historic windswept island. In 1916 Shackleton was forced to leave 22 of his men stranded on these shores, while he and five others embarked on an unbelievable last-ditch rescue attempt. What followed is one of the greatest rescue stories of all time. Every passenger will return with a greater knowledge of this gripping tale of adventure in a truly remarkable part of the world.

*Day 14: At Sea

Our expedition team will prepare you for our experience in the Antarctic Peninsula and South Shetland Islands.

*Day 15 to 17: Antarctic Peninsula & South Shetland Islands

In the area of the Antarctic Sound, we will try to visit the following sites:

Argentine Antarctic Station Esperanza
We will try to sail the passage to the east side of the Antarctic Peninsula, which traverses the Antarctic Sound and runs northwest-to-southeast. Hope Bay and the Argentine Station Esperanza are located on the western side of the Sound.

Brown Bluff
Brown Bluff, a promontory on the Tabarin Peninsula, is located south of Hope Bay. Both of them might be possible landing sites. The Weddell Sea represents the center of the Peninsula´s Adélie Penguin population.

Paulet Island
Paulet and the already mentioned sites, might give us ample proof of this. The numbers of penguins are breathtaking. The region also teems with vibrant exploration history. The most bizarre of these tales involves the Swedish Antarctic Expedition of 1901-03 under the command of geologist Otto Nordenskjöld. Four visitor sites have links to this expedition: Hope Bay, Paulet Island, Snow Hill Island, and Cape Well-Met on Vega Island. Our expedition staff will be pleased to share their exciting story with you. Nordenskjöld´s expedition was the first to overwinter in the Peninsula. His ship the Antarctic, under the command of the famous Norwegian whaling captain Carl Anton Larsen, was trapped in the ice and sank, but the men survived on different locations and even managed to carry out significant scientific research in the area.

Our plan is to sail through the Gerlache Strait into the Northwest Antarctic Peninsula area.

Gerlache Strait
This region of broad straits, mountainous islands, protected bays, and narrow channels offer moments of solitude. A profusion of tall peaks humans have never climbed and vast glaciers flowing inexorably seaward are the physical features here.

Hydrurga Rocks
We might visit Hydrurga Rocks, a small group of islets, which lie east of Two Hummock Island in the Palmer Archipelago, at the northern entrance of the Gerlache Strait. Chinstrap Penguins, Blue-eyed Shags and Kelp Gulls are confirmed breeders here.
Cuverville Island

We might also go to Cuverville Island, which lies in the scenic Errera Channel, in the center of the Gerlache Strait. A well-defined raised beach forms a nesting site for many Gentoo Penguins here. On our way north we plan to explore the South Shetland Islands.

Deception Island
Deception is the largest of three recent volcanic centers in the South Shetlands. Sailing through the narrow passage into the flooded caldera of Deception Island is truly amazing. Once inside, the rising slope of the black, cinder-covered volcanic rim can be walked uphill to a rather spectacular vantage point.

Half Moon Island
This crescent-shaped island, in the entrance of Moon Bay between Greenwich and Livingston Islands, is home to Chinstrap Penguins in breathtaking surroundings.

*Days 18 & 19: At Sea

We leave Antarctica and head north across the Drake Passage. Join our lecturers and naturalists on deck as we search for seabirds and whales. We will also enjoy some final lectures. Take the chance to relax and reflect on the fascinating adventures we have had over the past days.

*Day 20: Ushuaia

We arrive at the port of Ushuaia in the early morning and disembark the USHUAIA after breakfast.

 

 

classic south georgia trip map

 

 Please note: The above itinerary is a guide only. Our exact route and program will vary to take best advantage of local weather and ice conditions and opportunities to view wildlife. Changes will be made by the Captain and/or Expedition Leader to facilitate the best results from the prevailing conditions. A daily program sheet will be issued on board. Flexibility is the key to success.

Trip: Polar Circle Quest

 
Route: Expedition cruise to the Antarctic Peninsula, South Shetland Islands, & endeavor to cross the Polar Circle. Aboard the USHUAIA


Duration: 12 Days aboard plus travel time


PLEASE CONTACT US FOR MORE DETAILS AND AVAILABLE DATES

 

Exploring the South Shetland Islands, the Antarctic Peninsula and endeavoring to cross the Polar Circle which few have ever crossed.

Itinerary:

*Day 1: Depart from Ushuaia

Embark the USHUAIA in the afternoon and meet your expedition and lecture staff. After you have settled into your cabins we sail along the famous Beagle Channel and the scenic Mackinlay Pass.

*Day 2 & 3: At Sea. Crossing the Drake Passage

Named after the renowned explorer, Sir Francis Drake, who sailed these waters in 1578, the Drake Passage also marks the Antarctic Convergence, a biological barrier where cold polar water sinks beneath the warmer northern waters. This creates a great upwelling of nutrients, which sustains the biodiversity of this region. The Drake Passage also marks the northern limit of many Antarctic seabirds. As we sail across the passage, Antarpply Expeditions' lecturers will be out with you on deck to help with the identification of an amazing variety of seabirds, including many albatrosses, which follow in our wake.

The USHUAIA's open bridge policy allows you to join our officers on the bridge and learn about navigation, watch for whales, and enjoy the view. A full program of lectures will be offered as well.

The first sightings of icebergs and snow-capped mountains indicate that we have reached the South Shetland Islands, a group of twenty islands and islets first sighted in February 1819 by Capt. William Smith of the brig Williams. With favorable conditions in the Drake Passage our lecturers and naturalists will accompany you ashore as you experience your first encounter with the penguins and seals on Day 3.

*Days 4 to 9: Exploring the Antarctic Peninsula, the South Shetland Islands, and endeavor to cross the Polar Circle

Exquisite beauty and pristine landscapes are waiting for you on the western side of the Antarctic Peninsula. Myriads of icebergs with different shades and shapes are floating free in the waterways around the continent. The Antarctic Peninsula's remarkable history will also provide you with a type of excitement often only associated with the early explorers. You will have plenty of time to explore its amazing scenery and a wide variety of wildlife. Apart from Adélie, Gentoo and Chinstrap Penguins and other seabirds you are likely to encounter Weddell, crabeater, fur and leopard seals as well as Minke whales and orcas at close range. At this time of year it is also very likely to encounter big cetaceans, such as humpback, Finn and Sei whales in the area.
 
We hope to navigate some of the most beautiful waterways the area has to offer, such as: the Gerlache Strait, Errera Channel, Neumayer Channel and the extremely narrow Lemaire Channel. Possible landing sites may include: Paradise Bay, which is perhaps the most aptly named place in the world with its impressive glacial fronts and mountains, Cuverville Island, home of the biggest Gentoo Penguin colony in the Peninsula surrounded by glaciers and castellated icebergs, and the British Museum and Post office Port Lockroy.

As further exploration will lead us far South of the Lemaire Channel in quest of the Polar Circle, we might also visit the Ukrainian Station Vernadsky, the former British base Faradey, where the ozone hole was first spotted, the rugged Yalour Islands and south of the Polar Circle Detaille Island.
On our way North we plan to explore the South Shetland Islands. The volcanic island group is a haven for wildlife. Vast penguin rookeries and seals hauling out on the shorelines make every day spent here unforgettable. Sailing through the narrow passage into the flooded caldera of Deception Island is truly amazing, so is visiting the crescent shaped island Half Moon, home to Chinstrap Penguins in breathtaking surroundings.

*Days 10 & 11: At Sea. Crossing the Drake Passage, northbound

We leave Antarctica and head north across the Drake Passage. Join our lecturers and naturalists on deck as we search for seabirds and whales and enjoy some final lectures. Take the chance to relax and reflect on the fascinating adventures of the past days on the way back to Ushuaia.

*Day 12: Arrival in Ushuaia

We arrive at the port of Ushuaia in the early morning and disembark the USHUAIA after breakfast.

 

classic antarctica trip map

Please note: The above itinerary is a guide only. Our exact route and program will vary to take best advantage of local weather and ice conditions and opportunities to view wildlife. Changes will be made by the Captain and/or Expedition Leader to facilitate the best results from the prevailing conditions. A daily program sheet will be issued on board. Flexibility is the key to success.

Trip: Weddell Sea Quest

 
Route: Expedition cruise to the Antarctic Peninsula, the South Shetland Islands & the Weddell Sea. Aboard the USHUAIA


Duration: 12 Days aboard plus travel time


PLEASE CONTACT US FOR MORE DETAILS AND AVAILABLE DATES

 

Follow in Shackleton's footsteps and join us for a truly unique trip to the Antarctic Peninsula, South Shetland Islands & the Weddell Sea.

Itinerary:

*Day 1: Depart from Ushuaia

Embark the USHUAIA in the afternoon and meet your expedition and lecture staff. After you have settled into your cabins we sail along the famous Beagle Channel and the scenic Mackinlay Pass.

*Day 2 & 3: Crossing the Drake Passage

Named after the renowned explorer, Sir Francis Drake, who sailed these waters in 1578, the Drake Passage also marks the Antarctic Convergence, a biological barrier where cold polar water sinks beneath the warmer northern waters. This creates a great upwelling of nutrients, which sustains the biodiversity of this region. The Drake Passage also marks the northern limit of many Antarctic seabirds.

As we sail across the passage, Antarpply Expeditions' lecturers will be out with you on deck to help with the identification of an amazing variety of seabirds, including many albatrosses, which follow in our wake. The USHUAIA´s open bridge policy allows you to join our officers on the bridge and learn about navigation, watch for whales, and enjoy the view. A full program of lectures will be offered as well.

The first sightings of icebergs and snow-capped mountains indicate that we have reached the South Shetland Islands, a group of twenty islands and islets first sighted in February 1819 by Capt. William Smith of the brig Williams. With favorable conditions in the Drake Passage our lecturers and naturalists will accompany you ashore as you experience your first encounter with the penguins and seals on Day 3.

*Days 4 to 6: Exploring the Weddell Sea

This is where huge tabular icebergs roam. In some years, the Erebus & Terror Gulf and Weddell Sea are chock-a-block full with ice, making for exciting ice navigation. Get up early and go out on deck. It may be 3:30h in the morning, but the sunrises will be unlike anything you´ve ever seen. Huge tabular bergs break from the Larsen, Ronne, and Filchner ice shelves and combine with one-year-old and multi-year sea ice to produce a floating, undulating panorama of rugged ice scenery. All-white Snow Petrels are likely to be coursing over the floes, often joined by Pintado Petrels.

The usual passage to the east side of the Antarctic Peninsula traverses the Antarctic Sound, which is 30 miles (48 km) long and 7-12 miles (11-19 km) wide and runs northwest-to-southeast. Hope Bay and the Argentine Station Esperanza, are located on the western side of the Sound. Brown Bluff, a promontory on the Tabarin Peninsula, is located south of Hope Bay. Both of them might be possible landing sites. The Weddell Sea represents the center of the Peninsula´s Adélie Penguin population. Devil Island, Paulet Island and the already mentioned sites, might give us ample proof of this. The numbers of penguins are breathtaking. Sometimes juvenile Emperor Penguins have been sighted, riding ice floes but are by no means regular in the area.

This region also teems with vibrant exploration history. The most bizarre of these tales involves the Swedish Antarctic Expedition of 1901-03 under the command of geologist Otto Nordenskjöld. Four visitor sites have links to this expedition: Hope Bay, Paulet Island, Snow Hill Island, and Cape Well-Met on Vega Island. Our expedition staff will be pleased to share their exciting story with you. Nordenskjöld´s expedition was the first to overwinter in the Peninsula. His ship the Antarctic, under the command of the famous Norwegian whaling captain Carl Anton Larsen, was trapped in the ice and sank, but the men survived on different locations and even managed to carry out significant scientific research in the area.

*Days 7 to 9: Exploring the Antarctic Peninsula and the South Shetland Islands

The Antarctic Peninsula´s remarkable history will also provide you with a type of excitement often only associated with the early explorers. You will have plenty of time to explore its amazing scenery, a pristine wilderness of snow, ice, mountains and waterways and a wide variety of wildlife. Apart from Gentoo and Chinstrap Penguins and other seabirds you are likely to encounter Weddell, crabeater and leopard seals as well as Minke whales and orcas at close range.

We hope to navigate some of the most beautiful waterways: the Gerlache Strait, Errera Channel and Neumayer Channel. Possible landing sites may include: Paradise Bay, which is perhaps the most aptly named place in the world with its impressive glacial fronts and mountains, Cuverville Island, home of the biggest Gentoo Penguin colony in the Peninsula surrounded by glaciers and castellated icebergs, and the British Museum and Post office at Port Lockroy.

Further exploration will lead us to the South Shetland Islands. The volcanic island group is a haven for wildlife. Vast penguin rookeries and seals hauling out on the shorelines make every day spent here unforgettable. Sailing through the narrow passage into the flooded caldera of Deception Island is truly amazing, so is visiting the crescent shaped island Half Moon, home to Chinstrap Penguins in breathtaking surroundings.

There might also be a chance to visit the enigmatic Elephant Island. Sir Ernest Shackleton fans will need no introduction to this historic windswept island. In 1916 Shackleton was forced to leave 22 of his men stranded on these shores, while he and five others embarked on an unbelievable last-ditch rescue attempt. What followed is one of the greatest rescue stories of all time. Every passenger will return with a greater knowledge of this gripping tale of adventure in a truly remarkable part of the world.

*Days 10 & 11: At Sea. Crossing the Drake Passage, northbound

We leave Antarctica and head north across the Drake Passage. Join our lecturers and naturalists on deck as we search for seabirds and whales and enjoy some final lectures. Take the chance to relax and reflect on the fascinating adventures of the past days on the way back to Ushuaia.

*Day 12: Arrival in Ushuaia

We arrive at the port of Ushuaia in the early morning and disembark the USHUAIA after breakfast.

 

 

classic antarctica trip map

Please note: The above itinerary is a guide only. Our exact route and program will vary to take best advantage of local weather and ice conditions and opportunities to view wildlife. Changes will be made by the Captain and/or Expedition Leader to facilitate the best results from the prevailing conditions. A daily program sheet will be issued on board. Flexibility is the key to success.

The USHUAIA has been refurbished to accommodate a maximum of 88 passengers in 46 comfortable cabins and suites.

ushuaia ship

 

Originally built for the United States agency NOAA (National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration), the USHUAIA has been refurbished to accommodate a maximum of 88 passengers in 46 comfortable cabins and suites.

The ice-strengthened polar vessel USHUAIA is very well appointed and provides ample deck space and an open bridge policy. The full complement of inflatable landing craft ensures superb landings and wildlife viewing opportunities on the otherwise inaccessible coastline.

All cabins include ample storage space. Public areas feature a large dining room (one sitting), an open-plan observation lounge / lecture room with modern multimedia equipment, bar and a well-stocked library. There is also a changing room and a small infirmary.

Our expert captain, officers and crew are highly experienced in Antarctic navigation and have a great love of nature. We provide a specialist team of international expedition leaders and lecturers, all extremely knowledgeable, enthusiastic, helpful and dedicated to the protection of the environment. Our chefs prepare excellent cuisine including many local specialties and the bar is well-stocked with carefully selected wines and spirits.

 

Accomodation

*Suites: 4 Outside cabins with windows on the upper deck G, private facilities,   two lower berths, lounge, TV, DVD player and fridge. Suite 201 features two double beds, Suite 202 one double bed and a sofa bed. Suites 204 and 207 feature three lower single beds.

*Superior: 9 Twin outside cabins with windows on the upper deck G, private  facilities, two lower berths. Cabin 301 has one double and one single bed.

*Premier: 6 Twin outside cabins with windows on the upper deck G, private  facilities, two lower berths;
2 Single cabins with portholes (view obstructed by lifeboat) on the upper deck G, private facilities.

*Standard Plus: 11 Twin outside cabins with portholes or windows on deck E, private facilities, two lower berths. Cabin 640 has one double bed.
2 Triple outside cabins with portholes or windows on deck E, private facilities, three lower berths.

*Standard: 12 Twin outside cabins with portholes on deck E, semi-private facilities,  two berths (upper/lower).

N.B. Semi-private facilities: Two cabins share one bathroom accessible from both cabins (shower and wc). Each cabin is also equipped with its own washbasin.

Ushuaia deck plan

 

Expedition cruises on board the USHUAIA

Rates-page0001

 

Friday, 06 November 2009 15:01
Published in Beyond Endurance 2006

'Today to the day, tommorrow to the date' (in the words of team member Eugene Furlong)- One year has passed since the Beyond Endurance 2008 team members departed from Dublin airport to start their adventure to South Georgia, Elephant Island and the Antarctic Peninsula. The expedition was led by world renowned expedition leader, Pat Falvey, in what was seen as the ultimate ‘ big adventure’ into the coldest, most remote regions on earth. A year later, texts, emails and calls from those who joined the voyage confirm that it was indeed a trip of a lifetime and has left everyone with wonderful memories, pictures, stories and friendships. To look back on this expedition's logs and blogs, click here http://www.beyondendurance.ie />www.beyondendurance.ie.

From all here in the Expedition Office, Happy Anniversary teams of 2008 & 2006!

 

www.patfalvey.com

 

Thursday, 06 November 2008 00:00
Published in Beyond Endurance 2008

The Beyond Endurance Voyage 2008 is set to depart Ireland tomorrow! This promises to be an exciting expedition for all involved. Pat and his team of fifteen will be crossing South Georgia in the coming weeks, world class scientists will be carrying out important research, and for the first time ever, eight Irish transitional year students will be participating in an innovative project on global warming and climate change. Follow progress live on beyondendurance.ie or www.patfalvey.com

 

Sunday, 03 August 2008 00:00

0.28 AM 3rd August.
It is with great sadness that I have received the news from Dave Bolger in Norway that our good friend and climbing partner Rolf Bae has been taken in a tragic accident on K2.

One of the worlds top explorers, have been taken from us, Rolf was climbing with his wife Cecilie Skog and died tragically while descending on K2 yesterday. He will be a great loss to the adventure world and as a friend. May he rest in peace.

Picture on a recent trip to South Georgia as guide on our trip across South Georgia in honour of our Irish polar explorers. Shackleton, Tom Crean, Forde, Keohane and the McCarthy brothers.

It’s at time like this that you just cant take in such a loss.

Sympathy to Ceicilie his Family and friends.

Pat

www.patfalvey.com

 

Thursday, 24 July 2008 00:00
Published in Beyond Endurance 2008

The middle of the summer has just passed us and the excitement is gathering momentum. Some of our team members call us on a weekly basis to see if there is any news or maybe just for a friendly chat! We are currently finalising details for our get-together in September and can't wait to meet up with all of the team. That will be a great chance to have your questions answered and view our models in their Antarctic clothing and gear!! Over the next few days we will have an update from our Science & Student project team coordinators.

Final Bookings

We are receiving lots of enquiries regarding this trip of a lifetime to the white continent and South Georgia. We have now only limited berth options available so please contact us immediately on 064 44181 if you are interested or know someone who is.

 

South Georgia Traverse

Our South Georgia traverse team training in Norway was an excellent experience with great conditions and skills learned. The team are strong and great craic, we are now putting forward our submisssion to the SG Governate. They will be training further before they go with one official date coming up in a few weeks.

Website

Our website will be updated on a more regular basis from now on. The latest updates are the "staff team":http://beyondendurance.ie/teams page with the science team and student team to be uploaded very soon. We will be covering our members blog section in the september briefing which will allow team members to update an online diary from september onwards and more importantly of their adventures while away in November. Have a look at the 2006 page 'Who's blogging now' on

http://2006.beyondendurance.ie/members

to get a feel for it.

Photo: Front cover of a recent Supplement with the Independent.

 

www.patfalvey.com

 

Friday, 29 February 2008 00:00
Published in Beyond Endurance 2008

Bookings are in full swing for our November expedition to South Georgia, Elephant Island and Antarctica. Places are limited, enquire now!

DATES: 7th Nov - 2nd Dec 2008

Expedition Support Cruise
No experience required

South Georgia Traverse
Ordinary people to train in*

064 44181

*More training dates available for those who missed our February session

Further details are available on the official expedition website
www.beyondendurance.ie

 

www.patfalvey.com

 

Wednesday, 15 November 2006 00:00
Published in Beyond Endurance 2006

photo: Freddy makes new King penguin friends at Fortuna Bay, 2006.

On the Beyond Endurance Expediton we took lots of ordinary people to the island of South Georgia which is 3 days sailing east of Ushuaia, South America, in November 2006.

"Freddy was scared when he saw saw the bad weather as we sailed in to King Hakkon Bay, the same place where Tom Crean and his ship mates landed 90 years before us" said Clare O'Leary.

Freddy then gave us his account:

After the weather got sunny and the wind died down a little, we set off up the glaciers to find a campsite. We had a tough day carrying our gear and not resting for long.

The Trident towers were very hard to climb and once we had a quick rest we slid down the snow on the other side, that was great fun!!

In our tents we boiled lots of water from snow we collected in the top of the saucepan, opening our food bags we have to put some water in to the bag, and wait for it to cook by itself!! Some tents had fallen over by morning time and Pat had to call the ship on his Satellite phone to get more.

This place is really beautiful with lots of snow capped peaks peeping out of the big glaciers. We had a very long day after the Crean Glacier and finally camped beside the seals on Fortuna bay.

I remember a story I heard of Tom Crean and how he helped Shackleton to rescue his men on this island before. They had only some biscuits to eat and no tents. I really think they are heroes for doing a great job rescuing their men.

When we got back on the ship I got some dry clothes, a big dinner and rested so that I would have energy for the next adventure.

After the crossing we saw lots of penguins, seals and loads of birds. I got to ride on a RIB, which is a small boat that goes really fast around all those huge icebergs, sometimes the icy water would spray over the edge and get us all wet and cold.

I hope I have enough training for the South Pole, Pat said its going to be a lot colder and windier there so I'd better get my clothes ready.

 

www.patfalvey.com

 

Tuesday, 23 October 2007 00:00
Published in South Pole 2007-08

Phase 1 – Crossing South Georgia will air on RTE from today for the next 4 weeks. We will be shooting the South Pole documentary and are hoping that RTE will continue to support us by commissioning our next phase of fulfilling Shackleton’s dream of reaching the South Pole and Beyond.

Pat and Jonathon will be documenting the expedition in HDV film format.

Niall Foley worked on selecting equipment and supplies from heatpacks, all weather housing, camera setup and a crash course in filming techniques. www.niallfoley.ie

 

www.patfalvey.com

 

Wednesday, 08 August 2007 00:00
Published in Past Projects

It is finally on our screens, well kind of. RTE have just released their upcoming schedule of programming for Autumn/Winter. The new 4 part Beyond Endurance reality documentary leads the way for their factual programmes which should be aired in late October for 4 weeks.

Look out for RTE guide reviews and will feature on RTE previews closer the air date. Further info and video promo's are available here. http://www.rte.ie/tv/newseason/ Thanks to Steve O Reilly and Karen Rodgers from Panache television for delivering the goods after nearly 2 years of production. Well done!! I remember the day I met Steve in Dublin and we discussed the expedition with Pat and it has grown from there. Thanks especially to Pat and all the team members for having the dream and doing the dream.

 

www.patfalvey.com

 

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