The Drake Passage

The Sea Spirit

The Sea Spirit

The Drake Passage, an ocean crossing feared by even hardened sailors for the ferocity and unpredictability of the weather and ocean.

We were all feeling a little bit nervous as the ship pulled up anchor and we slipped away from the port in Ushuaia.

Sailing into the Drake Passage

We had heard that the waves can be as high as ten metres during a storm on the Drake Passage and I am petrified of waves so I was particularly nervous as the ship pulled away from the shore.

Also the ship the Sea Spirit and our home for the next two days has outdone our expectations completely, it is a palace and I know we were all expecting much less.

So far the Drake has been kind to us and we had our first meal on board the ship on calm waters

Around three am in the morning I began to feel really sea sick, although I once became sea sick kayaking around Penguin Island so it was expected.

The ship creaked and rocked from side to side in the three-metre swell and the curtains in my cabin swayed from side to side and it helped me to measure the size of the waves based on how far across the cabin they swayed.

I stayed in bed all day and felt really seasick unless I lay on my back staring at the ceiling.

The ships crew were helping us to get into the spirit of the expedition and were playing polar themed movies on the televisions in our room.

Appropriate polar viewing

Appropriate polar viewing

After David Attenborough’s ‘Frozen Planet’ the film ‘Happy Feet’ was played on the television and after watching it three times in a row I decided to venture out on deck with my cabin mate Bella from Sweden for ‘wave watch.’

My close friends and family know that I do not have a very high drug tolerance and unfortuantly because I was feeling so seasick I had to take some seasickness medication.

They appear to be too strong for me and as a result I was high for the better part of the crossing of the Drake Passage.

I tried my best to concentrate but one of the side effects was blurred vision and it was really scary to not be able to see properly and focus on things.

Luckily for everyone I recorded a video of myself towards the end of the drake crossing and here it is for your viewing pleasure:

We spotted our first ice berg today as well and could just make out land in the distance.

It looked like cloud cover but then if you looked hard enough you could make out a mountain within the clouds.

It was such an exciting moment and we have found out that tomorrow we will be in Antarctica and landing on the continent as we have crossed into ANTARCTIC WATERS!

Stay tuned for the next post when we finally reach Antarctica!

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