Cruising slowly through dense pack ice this morning, slowly making our way west along the coast of this very remote region of West Antarctica, we came upon a very large floe of flat, first-year sea ice. The ice was accompanied by several Emperor penguins and a crabeater seal or two happily riding along.

As soon as lunch was done, National Geographic Endurance sidled up to the edge of the floe and used the azipods to hold herself there, as though glued in place. The gangway went down and moments later Expedition Leader Russ Evans announced that the ice was safe and stable so we would be able to head out for our first ice walk of the expedition. It was a fantastic experience, strolling on a wide expanse of free-floating, frozen ocean, photographing penguins and a beautiful iceberg that was drifting with the floe.