Thursday, October 17, 2013

Back in the South!

By Cam Oct 17 Sunrise: Day 3 onboard Pelagic Australis

– rolling along with the westerlies down here in the rollicking furious fifties – latitude's that is. The roaring forties to the north and the screaming 60s to the south. We are eastbound and earthbound along the 52nd south highway. 2 headsails wing and wing held out by carbon poles and main lashed to centered boom is our sail configuration. Simple, Surfs in the 20 knot range, winds sometimes over 40 knots, seas, well seas, big and powerful seas and happy to running before them.

– Elegant sail configuration, no trimming required and the autopilot handles the rest as those on watch pass their time marveling at the seas, birds and surroundings. Conversations vary from the mundane topics, small banter to fill the voids, what might be the passing ship up to? Of the ends of the earth and high latitude explorations and climbing, crevasse rescues, to the end and beginnings of the human race, global warming, over fishing, terrorism, over population or deploying a new set of foils and flying to our destination of South Georgia in similar manner as the recent America's Cup cats seared down the San Francisco waterfront airborne on wings of carbon and of course food is discussed and prepared and eaten with lots of enthusiasm by those feeling well enough to partake.

The great birds, I consider my friends, the wandering sea birds of the southern oceans greeted us 3 days ago as we departing Stanley with the typically impressive aerial acrobatics that only the roaming seabirds of the southern oceans are capable of. Birds, big mysterious, beautiful and magically majestic, similar in many ways of my salty friends, who only return to land to breed.

I spend hours in awe, watching, wondering how I too could fly like an albatross or petrel. Soon, for my first time, I will get to see Albatross on the ground, on their nests and hopefully with eggs and young born soon to be aviators feeding, off regurgitated fish, preparing for a life roaming the vast oceans in elegant nomadic flight.

200 miles to go. Skis and camping gear ready for landing and the Shackleton traverse.


1 comment:

  1. Hi All,
    Your stories are so encouraging and refreshing. What a tremendous excursion for all of you. Look forward to hearing the first-hand accoutns from Larry and Amy upon their return stateside. Safe skiiing.