First of all, here is an overview of our landing sites on the South Shetland Islands. The first stop was at King George Island, where there are a number of research stations. We visited this one:
Its official name is this.
For everyone who does not speak Polish, it is Arctowski Station, named after a Polish geologist. People there must think a lot about home.
If one follows some simple rules, even the ordinary tourist is welcome. I found the station very exciting, but had forgotten to cover my camera lens – condensation – no pictures. Sorry. Their penguin origami and DVD-collection were both impressive, but best of all was how warmly the researchers welcomed us!
Outside, I experienced a few ‘firsts’. My first Weddell Seal. Peaceful.
My first Adelie penguin. The rookery there is also study ground, so we had to stay a bit away. Which is fine, Adelie penguins are in decline on the Antarctic Peninsula, so as little disturbance as possible is very good as far as I’m concerned!
I also saw my first Chinstrap penguins. Both species feature often on www.penguinwatch.org, but I don’t know if this particular project on King George Island is part of the Zooniverse one. The Chinstraps here were looking for pebbles for their nests.
The last of my firsts was, well, a reminder that the station is manned by humans.