Postcards

A Dragonfly (Libellule) in Antarctica!

Published on 01 august 2015 at 0h00

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"We made it back: after 5 days in the Drake Passage we finally sighted the legendary and impressive rock of Cape Horn - the first time we see land in 5 days and the first time we see land without ice and snow in almost 5 weeks! You might wonder: How was the mighty Drake Passage this time? Drake Lake or Drake Shake? It was not too bad, but pretty bad. With winds up to 35 knots and waves up to 4 m there was enough to make us sick and very happy to be back on the other side. We were 3 French sailors and 4 Swiss alpinists. And Antarctica? The colours are white and black. Everything is either white (snow, ice, sky) or black (water, rocks). Sometimes there is a little bit of blue from the icebergs or the very rare sunny sky patches. The sailing on the Peninsula was relatively easy wind-wise (no winds above 25kn), but difficult from a navigational point of view (no accurate maps, lots of hidden rocks just below the surface). The ice conditions were relatively easy compared to the NW Passage, except south of Vernadsky where this year access to the coast was impossible. We anchored in 10 different spots and found most of them relatively safe, meaning ground ...

This article appeared in issue 143. To read the article in full, buy this issue individually

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