Setting Off for the Bottom of the World

Stacy here: Our day today, Sunday, Feb. 1st, began with a 3:00 a.m. wake up call, so we could make our 6:20 flight.

Ushuaia 5

We landed in Ushuaia before noon and then had a great lunch at at a parilla called “Patagonia Mia”.

Ushuaia 1

After lunch, we had a brief bus tour of the Tierra del Fuego National Park, which was lovely. It was very forested, and had beautiful fields with streams running though them. You could see numerous beaver dams, as beavers are apparently ver plentiful. We even saw a Pygmy Owl.

Tierra del Fuego National Park

Tierra del Fuego National Parkark

Pygmy Owl

Then we were set free in Ushuaia for some sight seeing before we boarded the ship. The town looks like Dutch Harbor, Alaska, for you “Deadliest Catch” fans, except that apparently, it is a lot better off,as it is a free trade zone. We got some good shots of our ship, Le Soléal, waiting to take us out the Beagle Channel, and into the Drake Passage.

Getting ready to set sail

Getting ready to set sail

The town of Ushuaia, looking over the Beagle Channel
The town of Ushuaia, looking over the Beagle Channel

The Drake Passage is reputedly the roughest body of water on earth, as it is where the Pacific, Atlantic and Southern Oceans all converge. For that reason, all 210 passengers were eager to get the captain’s first briefing about projected weather conditions in the Drake. Shortly after embarkation, we got our wish. There is a weather front moving through, so he postponed our departure about three hours to let the worst of the front pass before we sail into the the Drake. The announcement was met with hearty cheers from all of us! This should be interesting!

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