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twangster

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  1. Wow
    twangster got a reaction from Cactus527 in Live from the Wind(s) of Antarctica. Dec. 19, 2023.   
    It was bitterly cold with the windchill from the moving ship in the wind but there were so many whales.

    The scenery was pretty outstanding as well.




















  2. Like
    twangster got a reaction from Cactus527 in Live from the Wind(s) of Antarctica. Dec. 19, 2023.   
    We had been informed this was a whale hotspot.  It was.




    There were some penguins out here as well.






    They were everywhere and all around.

    Some near.  Some far.


    Whales to the left and whales to the right.






    I have never seen so many whales in one location before.  It went on for hours.

  3. Love
    twangster got a reaction from Cactus527 in Live from the Wind(s) of Antarctica. Dec. 19, 2023.   
    Departing from Point Wild yielded one more chance to capture the Chinstrap in action.

     

     

     

     

    Such a great weather day!

  4. Like
    twangster got a reaction from She Sails Away in Live from the Wind(s) of Antarctica. Dec. 19, 2023.   
    I received a phone call in my suite between stops.
    Remember that silent auction for the South Georgia Heritage Trust?
    I won... the most expensive bottle of whiskey I've ever purchased.
    Buy hey, it's for a great organization and a pretty cool bottle.

     
  5. Haha
    twangster got a reaction from Cactus527 in Live from the Wind(s) of Antarctica. Dec. 19, 2023.   
    Six inches.
  6. Like
    twangster got a reaction from Skigoofy in Live from the Wind(s) of Antarctica. Dec. 19, 2023.   
    A quick word about the complimentary parka.  
    This worked quite well for me.  It is a two part design with an inner bubble style jacket that zips into the red waterproof outer shell.  I didn't keep mine zippered into the shell, I simply put on the shell over the jacket.
    Sizing for me was perfect. I am typically a large ski jacket and this large fit well.  I generally wore a long sleeve t-shirt and the Silversea parka on all excursions and I was never cold.


    The shell did a great job.  Despite being splashed often on zodiac rides I was never wet inside.  
  7. Like
    twangster got a reaction from TessFromFlorida in Discovery of the Seas   
    I wouldn't hold my breath hoping a new ship class will be able to squeeze under those low bridges.  Same issue with Tampa.  
  8. Haha
    twangster got a reaction from Cactus527 in Live from the Wind(s) of Antarctica. Dec. 19, 2023.   
    Anyone fancy a shag?
    The Antarctic Shag.

    Time to head back to the ship.

    Stunning scenery.




  9. Like
    twangster got a reaction from Cactus527 in Live from the Wind(s) of Antarctica. Dec. 19, 2023.   
    They are a lot more graceful swimming through the water where they "porpoise" as they skim along near the surface.


    Throughout the morning this was occurring all around us as the colony went to sea to feed and return with full bellies to feed their young.




  10. Like
    twangster got a reaction from Cactus527 in Live from the Wind(s) of Antarctica. Dec. 19, 2023.   
    Despite the inhospitable environment and steep rock walls these penguins seem to thrive.

    They nest high above the water and make the commute down to the waterline to jump in, feed, and bring a meal home to the chicks they are raising.

    These are Chinstrap penguins, so called for obvious reasons namely the thin black line that resembles a chinstrap.

    Stains on their chests are from feeding their young back in the nests.






     
  11. Like
    twangster got a reaction from Cactus527 in Live from the Wind(s) of Antarctica. Dec. 19, 2023.   
    Expedition staff discovered this is a Southern Fulmar.

  12. Like
    twangster got a reaction from She Sails Away in Live from the Wind(s) of Antarctica. Dec. 19, 2023.   
    I decided to eat lunch in a venue that is currently jackets required.

    The Grill for lunch.

    Wholey iceberg.

  13. Like
    twangster got a reaction from Cactus527 in Live from the Wind(s) of Antarctica. Dec. 19, 2023.   
    More whales spotted in the distance.

    Theres from the expedition kayaking team was outside on deck 9 and took some time explain the difference between Fin and Humpback whales.

    Fin whales are the second largest behind Blue whales so much larger than humpback.

    Fin whales are longer and more slender while humpback are shorter and more broad.

    Fin whales don't tend to reveal to their flukes when diving like humpback whales sometimes do.

    Fin whales are more likely observed out in the open ocean like this.  As we later approach Elephant Island the sea floor rises towards the land.  We should expect to see many more whales and more likely to see Humpback whales closer to Elephant Island.
  14. Like
    twangster got a reaction from She Sails Away in Live from the Wind(s) of Antarctica. Dec. 19, 2023.   
    Pulling it all together on my 14” MacBook Pro with 4TB SSD is Adobe Lightroom Classic.  In the past I’ve had laptops with smaller SSD and used external storage but that’s a pain.  My laptop is a critical tool in my photography toolbox so I splurged for the larger internal SSD.
    I color grade each photo individually.  I have a work flow down from years of travel blogging.  I quickly rate each photo giving it two or three stars then based on how many photos that yields I run quickly scan through them a second time to whittle it down to a manageable number.  Then I more carefully color grade each of the three star rated candidates usually dropping a couple more where the focus was off or there is something else I don’t like.
    I prefer to go through my photos of the day on that same day.  The benefit of forcing myself to manage the plethora of photos I take on a daily basis in near realtime is that they are fresh in my head.  I can easily recall comments that a guide has made associating it with that moment.  It also helps to break it down into small pieces rather than going home and having a mountain of photos that I’ll get to someday.  Someday never seems to come.  
    A benefit to posting threads like this one in near real time is that it documents the journey for me.  I can come back and re-live this trip years from now just as I have gone back and reviewed my other threads like a visit to the Galápagos Islands.  That was an amazing experience.   However it’s also amazing how quickly you can forget small details that are captured for me (and others) to come back to when ever I feel the need to re-live the experience.
    There is a level of effort to the manner I post a live thread but as a solo traveler it’s gives me something to do.  
  15. Like
    twangster got a reaction from Cactus527 in Live from the Wind(s) of Antarctica. Dec. 19, 2023.   
    Here is a discussion of the camera kit I put together for this sailing.

    My main camera is a Sony A7R IVA.  
    I brought two lenses for this voyage.  A general purpose Sony f4 24 - 105mm G OSS and the Sony f2.8 70 - 200mm GM OSS II.  In addition to these two lenses are a 1.4x and a 2x teleconverter.  
    I always bring my trusty old Sony RX100M VI pocket camera.
    Lastly I have my Insta360 One X3 360° camera.
    Plus of course my iPhone 15 Plus and Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra but I rarely use those for the photographic effort of this voyage.
     
  16. Like
    twangster got a reaction from Cactus527 in Live from the Wind(s) of Antarctica. Dec. 19, 2023.   
    Sunny then... snow.  
    While having breakfast in The Restaurant we passed into a storm and it was snowing.

    Then it cleared up again.
    The weather changes quickly down here.
  17. Wow
    twangster got a reaction from Cactus527 in Live from the Wind(s) of Antarctica. Dec. 19, 2023.   
    The daily recap was scheduled for 18:15 in the theater and it was almost time to head down when... an announcement.  
    We've been invited to the bow on deck 5 for a special iceberg viewing.
    Normally closed to the public because it is a working crew area the Captain has made an exception for this occasion.




  18. Like
    twangster got a reaction from Cactus527 in Live from the Wind(s) of Antarctica. Dec. 19, 2023.   
    Elephant seals can dive to incredible depths but it tires them out so they head to the beach after a dive to rest and recover.







    Our driver tells us these are likely young males.

    Looking over to the glacial waterfall with a zodiac in the foreground seemed like a nice photo, then a fur seal photobombed it.

    From here we'll cruise over to the main beach.

    There was more evidence of the avian flu present and there were numbers of deceased penguins. 

    It's very sad to see but this is why we can't make landings everywhere.  As much as it's inconvenient for us it's devastating to many species here in South Georgia.  This is the reality of the situation.

    The colony here is estimated to be around 25,000 mating pairs.

  19. Like
    twangster got a reaction from Cactus527 in Live from the Wind(s) of Antarctica. Dec. 19, 2023.   
    As we began our departure from St Andrews Bay I was given a view towards the sea from my suite.  You can't see it very well in the photo but the horizon is littered with icebergs.

    I'm so glad I upgraded to a balcony suite for this sailing.  Not a bad place to post this thread from.





    We had an escort out of St Andrews Bay.

    More Kings.

    Our progression.

     
  20. Like
    twangster got a reaction from Cactus527 in Live from the Wind(s) of Antarctica. Dec. 19, 2023.   
    It's difficult to capture in photos the shear numbers.



    Fur seals coming ashore.

    It's a penguin pool party!



  21. Like
    twangster got a reaction from Cactus527 in Live from the Wind(s) of Antarctica. Dec. 19, 2023.   
    Off to the main beach.

    What a gorgeous day!


    King penguins wall to wall.




    Some elephant seals taking a break.


    Andrew thinks this may be the beach master.




     
     
  22. Like
    twangster got a reaction from Cactus527 in Live from the Wind(s) of Antarctica. Dec. 19, 2023.   
    We had a beautiful clear evening so I popped outside occasionally to capture some photos after sunset.  How often will you get a chance to see Grytviken at night?
    As much of a sunset as we'll get today:







  23. Like
    twangster got a reaction from Cactus527 in Live from the Wind(s) of Antarctica. Dec. 19, 2023.   
    The post office also has a store where you can buy postcards and mail them.  This was immensely popular and crowded.



    Time to head back to the ship.

    What a beautiful day!


    Looks like we did get some snow.











    Not a bad view as I sit here working on this post.

  24. Like
    twangster got a reaction from Cactus527 in Live from the Wind(s) of Antarctica. Dec. 19, 2023.   
    Soon enough it was my group's time.


    The weather was looking much better.

    Wait... a crew member handing out whiskey?





    The tradition is to share a toast over Shackleton's grave.  Crew members were available to stand in if you were alone.  They enjoyed their job today.

     




  25. Like
    twangster got a reaction from Cactus527 in Live from the Wind(s) of Antarctica. Dec. 19, 2023.   
    Leaving Fortuna Bay was also a treat.
    The scenery looked much better in person, these photos don't do it justice.

    On a beach I spotted a large number of King penguins.



    All around us seals and penguins were jumping in the water.  Many birds were flying around as well like this Imperial Cormorant.
     




    Just as I was ready to come in off the balcony a massive tidewater glacier appeared.




    Then in the snow it began to fade.

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