Adios from Cruceros Australis cruise number 243

Adios from Cruceros Australis cruise number 243

So here’s the last cruise picture I think……it was really hard to choose a few to show you because I took about 1000 in the three and a half days.
Speaking of which. This cruise is advertised as a five day trip. This is a stretch. We were on board for 90 hours, were fed four dinners, four breakfasts and three lunches. How can this be considered five days? (120 hours and one would like to think five of each meal… that would be five days.)
It was a beautiful, educational, enjoyable trip with seven off ship excursions by zodiac. The crew were very skilled and the whole thing – despite being too short – is unforgettable for all the right reasons!

One of our remote landing sites

One of our remote landing sites

I just loved this little jaunt. Zodiac ice breakers!
I don’t know if you can tell from the picture but typically for each disembarkation the first zodiac from the ship took a gang plank complete with a railing along one side so none of us would get wet toes during the landing process. Here they even added a length of carpet so us poor old dears wouldn’t slip on potentially slippery rock!
Our ship was able to get into fairly shallow bays and narrow fjords at it was a small ship and has a daft of only 3.40 meters.

Aguila glacier

Aguila glacier

We landed on the beach then walked around this lagoon almost to the foot of the glacier which came right down to the tree line. As you can see it was warm. What you can’t tell is that I was also fairly sunny – seems those clouds were determined to hang about over the glacier.
Another aspect of our after breakfast shore excursions was that before getting back on the zodiacs to return to the mother ship – we were served rather delicious scotch laced hot chocolate.

The scene of eating way too much delicious food

The scene of eating way too much delicious food

Meals on board were really good. We had assigned seating. I sat with my room mate from the US, another American couple, a family of three from Australia and a couple of sisters from Switzerland, one of whom lives in New York. I was the only Canadian on the cruise. (114 passengers I think it was Our table won the trivia questions challenge which took place over three lunch hours.

The ship to zodiac to ship transfer

The ship to zodiac to ship transfer

In case anyone is thinking we were docked for any of the shore excursions – let me set the record straight. No we weren’t. There were four zodiacs. They pulled up to a ladder at the stern of the ship. We stepped off the ship onto the bow of the zodiac and then shuffled down the sides to let more passengers on. Most of the time the seas were very calm, but even at Cape Horn it was easy because there was lots of crew members to help.

The light house at Cape Horn

The light house at Cape Horn

Unlike many of our lighthouses – this one is staffed. The light keeper and his family on hand to greet visitors. I guess they don’t get too many of those as it is a bit of a mission to get here. I simply can’t imagine what it must have been like for those early sailors trying to round this desolate coast line in their tiny sailing ships. Sometimes it took months to navigate this part of the ocean due to the prevailing westerly winds which kept blowing them back to the Atlantic side.

On shore at Cape Horn

On shore at Cape Horn

It was crazy windy. We had to keep our life jackets on as there was no place to leave them where they wouldn’t blow away. Also the crew wanted us to be ready to re-embark at a moment’s notice. Pretty amazing to be at this historic spot. In case you’re wondering – the monument is of an albatross in flight. This was at 7am by the way – before breakfast!