We left the West Falklands yesterday evening and made good speed over the Patagonian Shelf towards our origin and finale to this amazing voyage: Ushuaia, Argentina. The National Geographic Endurance made quick work of the 250 miles, and we woke in the morning heading towards the Strait of LeMaire, the passage between Isla de los Estados (appearing on our port side) and the Mitre Peninsula (on starboard) of Isla Grande de Tierra del Fuego. We had calmer seas than usual for this region and passed easily into the Beagle Channel by mid-afternoon. Sea days provide a bit of time to reflect on our recent journey, but the day was also filled with informative presentations on our current understanding of climate change and the human-controlled processes which influence, and may mitigate its impacts, as well as the necessary preparations we must take for our onward travels home.
National Geographic Endurance
National Geographic Endurance set sail from the western edge of the Falkland Islands late last evening, and we enjoyed a relaxing day at sea. Guests were treated to smooth seas with plenty of albatrosses soaring about the vessel. The morning was full of educational opportunities. The undersea team shared photos collected while exploring the diverse underwater environments that the Falkland Islands provide. Next came a presentation by marine biologist Connor Ryan who spoke about the dynamics of how plankton and seabirds dictate the ecological rhythms of the upper layer of the ocean. Such a trip as we have had is certainly hard to summarize. Over the past three weeks, we visited some of the most spectacular and densely populated wildlife regions on our planet. Today was a day of reflection, photo editing, fine food, and contemplation of all that has occurred.