- Try not to get too black and blue
- Arrive at South Georgia and visit Grytviken settlement
- Prepare for our first pre-Sunrise landing at 5:45 AM (2:45 AM EST now)
Today is the first day the weather has fouled our plans. We were supposed to wake up in a protected South Georgian inlet, but we’re still at sea. During the night, the wind picked up to 45 knots and the seas broke the 20 foot mark. It was the roughest night I’ve come to know in my lifetime. I might have gotten 2 hours of sleep amongst holding on to things to try to stay in bed. I took a full motion sickness pill as a sleep aid, but that only served to make me so groggy I didn’t have any common sense.
Speaking of common sense, I decided to crawl out of bed to take a shower around 5:30 AM (3:30 AM EST then) in 15+ foot seas. I should also mention that the waves were traveling in two different directions (West and North) making for some interesting boat movements as we were on an Easterly heading. I now have some nice bruises down my left side because I went flying out of the shower into the rock-hard sink. I’m amazed I didn’t break a bone!
Dinner actually had a decent turn out last night, but breakfast was rather quiet this morning. Of the 20+ tables, only 3 were being used. It was fun having eggs and watching the waves crash against the windows with continuous snow flying in between the wave crashes. Every once in a while you could see an iceberg over a sip of orange juice. Quite the surreal experience for a beach boy.
Holy fo’ shizzle is this place amazingly GORGEOUS! Out of the clouds and rocking seas came mountains. Beautiful mountains with green at the bottom, snow covered peaks, and blue iceberged feet. Some of these peaks are over 9,000 feet high. These mountains are an incredible backdrop to everything….shoot…the mountains are everything.
In the 15 knot arctic winds with 31 degree air and the boat traveling at 13 knots (figure a lot of wind chill to some already chilly temps) I just could not peal myself off the top deck and the view. I watched this scene unfold out of the fog for two hours. This is the most stunning land mother nature has ever created. Beaches, grasses, mountains, icebergs, glaciers, striped rocks, and cloud formations only huge mountains can create is what South Georgia is. It is truly unbelievable by telling and only something one can experience.
We are now 3 hours ahead of Eastern Time, and I need to wake up before 5:00 AM to be ready to hit the largest King Penguin colony on South Georgia at sun break. We should see over 100,000 nesting pairs of King Penguins mixed in with thousands of Elephant Seals. With the morning sun (pending no clouds) the images should be off the charts!