Wednesday, 5 January 2011

Engineers earning their money

Two recent ship problems have caused a bit of concern and delay, but both now seemingly fixed. First was the loss of the stabilisers after a power cut, but after a few hours of rolling around the guys downstairs got things up and going again (after a point where it looked as though they couldn't). There's nothing like being briefly without something to make you appreciate having it again.

The second issue has been something to do with the prop shaft which meant we were without propulsion for a bit while they fixed it. Drifting beam on to the weather is a disconcerting experience but there wasn't much wind or swell (we are quite close to South Georgia so if there was bad weather we could have got in to a fjord and anchored up).

Lots of Humpback Whales the last couple of days but none have come close enough to get decent photos. Some birds have though:

 Northern Giant Petrel
 Subantarctic Skua

 Wandering Albatrosses enjoying the updraft off the ship and drifting past the monkey island (deck above the bridge)
 Stromness whaling station
Perhaps surprisingly for a big lump of rock in the middle of the sea South Georgia isn't volcanic but actually made up of sedimentary and metamorphic rocks

 Fur Seals and Reindeer. In the late 70s there were hardly any (about 3) Fur Seals here but now they are all over the place. Good that a species has recovered and they are great to watch in the water but they are a real pain when ashore as they keep chasing after you (we didn't actually get ashore here, but they can cause a lot of problems for base relief. The Reindeer were introduced by whalers to provide fresh meat.

Wanderers and South Georgia

No comments: