Day 5, Arrival in Antarctica!

2200Z 11JAN21, anchored in Stancomb Cove, Telefon Bay, Deception Island, Antarctica.

Approaching Boyd Strait, early on Monday, we saw the snow and ice covered mountains of Smith Island welcoming us to Antarctica. The motor through the strait was fine and we were then able to set up on a close reach in calm seas with 10-15 knots of wind - perfect conditions oft referred to as "champagne sailing".

As we came through the strait, we saw our first Antarctic whales. Our first Gentoo penguins came swimming at us like dolphins porpoising along the surface. We later saw quite a few more whales as we approached Deception Island, one of which decided to swim alongside the boat for a few minutes. As we neared the South coast of Deception Island, we saw our first enormous penguin rookeries. The penguins were surprisingly high on the hills and had long, busy highways running up/down to the water.

We thoroughly enjoyed the relaxing, easy 35nm sail to Deception Island. We entered through Neptune's Bellows into the volcano caldera around 6pm. We were greeted by a friendly Argentinian naval research vessel and we talked with them as we moved to the sheltered cove where we would anchor.

Passage Information: 535nm, 4d 13h (109hrs), 4.9kts avg SOG, 44.6h on engine, one minor casualty: a parted lazy jack line that should be retrieved and spliced later today.

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