CRUISING AROUND CAPE HORN ... and other places

Reply Thu 8 Jun, 2006 07:12 pm
since 2006 is the year of our 50th wedding-anniversary and also our 50th year of coming to canada , mrs h and i decided a cruise around cap horn might be a good way to celebrate it .
we left toronto/canada on friday night , march 17 and flew overnight to
santiago de chile .
after two days in santiago we transferred to the port of valparaiso and
boarded the ms. rotterdam for a thirty-one day cruise around the horn with our final destination being lisbon/portugal .
on thursday , april 20 we disembarked in lisbon and flew back home .
we arrived back home in kingston/ontario about 24 hours after disembarking the rotterdam .
all-in-all it was a wonderful experience : new sights to see , new people to meet ... and 'mal-de-mere' gave us a pass !
i have to add that the norwalk virus struck each of us once at different times and we were under quarantine for about 24 hours each time (confined to cabin) , but it did not have any really adverse effect on our cruise enjoyment (probably prevented us from gaining weight from all the good food - is there a silverlining even in the norwalk virus ?).

i took about 800 digital images . it was my first experience with digital
photography . the camera i used is a rather small sony dsc-l1 , 4.1 pix , 3 x optical zoom , with a carl zeiss vario-tessar lens . the camera is about half the size of a cigarette pack and weighs no more than about 8 ounces - it slips easily into a pocket.

i'm not going to bore you with a presentation of 800 images , but think that some of you might be interested in seing a few of the better and interesting images .
i'll probably post about five to ten images every few days .
i'll see how it goes .
don't hesitate to let me know if you think this whole exercise is booooring !
i'll post thumbnails to reduce the space required on a2k .
feedback appreciated !


enjoying lunch in santiago...plenty of food and wine !

visiting the santa rita winery...perhaps should have stayed there ?


view of santiago and surrounding mountain chain

finally...aboard m.s. rotterdam in the port of santiago

first evening at sea...sunsets are beautiful

tuesday march 22 , first morning at sea , princess cruise line ship coming up the coast of chile
from the ship's logbook : strong breeze , rough seas...just beautiful

a teaser of things to come...
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Reply Thu 8 Jun, 2006 07:14 pm
That's a part of the world I'd love to see - and the only part of South America I'm VERY interested in. Can't wait for more pix!
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Reply Thu 8 Jun, 2006 07:28 pm
I'm looking forward to seeing more of these now that you've had some time to play with the photos.
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Reply Fri 9 Jun, 2006 09:45 am
ship's log :
wednesday , march 22 , puerto montt/chile
- 6:10 am - anchored offshore
- 5:08 pm - anchor away
- 5:24 pm - commence sea voyage

osorno volcano

just enjoying the beautiful scenery

another view of osorno volcano

petrohue falls with osorno volcano

are we in the 'black forest' ?
restaurant 'zur wassermuehle ' (the watermill)
good food and wine served for lunch

leaving puerto montt and sailing towards the darwin channel

another teaser : shall we all go for a swim to amuse the tourists ?
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Reply Fri 9 Jun, 2006 02:43 pm
ship's log :
thursday , march 23 , at sea - entering darwin channel
near gale , rough seas (waves to 20 feet)

friday , march 24 , at sea
fresh breeze , moderate seas
- 8:10 am - scenic cruising : amelia glacier


encountering a lone fishing boat - a welcome sight !

a stark yet beautiful landscape
the contrast between water , mountains and clouds was awesome
- made us feel pretty small




hurray ! the sun is coming out !

shall we go and visit mrs andersen ?
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Reply Fri 9 Jun, 2006 05:44 pm
great pix, hbg....watching and waiting Cool
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Reply Fri 9 Jun, 2006 06:55 pm
Oh, man, I'm in love with these photos... more, more, more!
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Reply Sat 10 Jun, 2006 02:34 pm
went to hear a cuban band that stopped over in kingston before starting their canadian tour today (saturday) at noon .
it was an outdoor concert near lake ontario . wonderful place for an outdoor concert on a sunny day ... but it was cold , cloudy and windy - only about 10 C - 50 F . the poor musicians could hardly move their fingers and we wore parkas !!!
still , it was nice to hear some hot tunes on a cold day .

picture posting was temporarily postponed to listen to the cuban tunes - and shop for lunch - and will now resume .
glad that you are enjoying the pictures ; we keep looking at them while posting ; we keep discovering things we had missed seeing earlier .
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Reply Sat 10 Jun, 2006 03:36 pm
ship's log :
saturday , march 25 - punta arenas/chile
5:24 am - pilot aboard
6:20 am - docked
7:14 pm - all lines gone
7:30 pm - commence sea voyage

about 50 miles from punta arenas on the brunswick peninsula ,
large colonies of 'magellan penguins' have their nesting grounds on
'seno otway' - otway bay .
a/t our guide , at the height of the season tens-of-thousands of penguins make theeir home here , since we arrived 'at the end of summer' - end of march - most penguins had left for warmer ares (they go north !) ; they
go up the coast of chile and argentina , to the falkland and the south-georgia islands .
still , there were plenty of penguins left for us to observe .
there are roped off pathways and the penguins didn't seem to be shy at all - they nested within 20 to 30 feet of the walkways .
btw feeding or disturbing the penguins is strictly forbidden - and the owners of the large area (several sqare miles ?) seemed to operate it in a way to keep both penguins and humans satisfied .

since it was the end of summer , it was fairly cool - around 10 C , 50 F - and it was good to have a parka .
the landscappe is rather bleak - grey , brown , little green grass left , mountains form the backdrop ... and as i discovered : they have plenty of skunks !


on the left side - right on the edge- there is the rump of a 'rhea' - a flightless bird of south-america - to be seen ;
we only saw a few on the busride out to otway bay , they seem somewhat shy



i wonder if she is in ?

yohoo , darling , may i come in ?





i tell you : shocking , just shocking !



(have to check on the penguins - a few more pix to come)
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Reply Sat 10 Jun, 2006 05:12 pm
Very Happy

I didn't see the rhea the first time I saw these photos. Took a second, more careful, look-see and there it was.
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Reply Sat 10 Jun, 2006 05:19 pm
where have all the penguins gone ?
just one left ; the others have gone fishing .





late afternoon ,
farmhand bringing in the sheep - while we are driving back to the ship ,
it was a long day !

7:30 pm - sailing for ushuaia/argentina
'norwalk virus' knocks out mrs h in the evening
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Reply Sun 11 Jun, 2006 03:08 pm
some of the pix have disappeared ; can't figure out why they don't show anymore .
i tested each picture after posting to make sure they were in the thread - what gives ?
since i won't be able to re-insert them , i'll post them here before posting any other pictures .

if anyone can give me a hint on how to prevent this from happening again , please let me know .

i wonder if she is in ?

only one penguin left - the others have gone swimming



goodbye , penguins !
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Reply Sun 11 Jun, 2006 04:11 pm
ship's log :
sunday , march 26 , ushuaia/argentina
- 10:25 am pilot aboard
- 7:26 pm unmoored
- 8:20 pm pilot off

because of the sneak attack of the norwalk-virus we had agreed to stay under quarantine in our cabin until the late afternoon ,
since we had picked up books from the library , had cabin service and could watch movies on TV it wasn't too much of a hardship .
we later found out that a number of passengers (including a couple at our table) had been quite sick just before boarding , so it was no surprise that the virus spread to many other passengers .
the cruise line was quite accomodating , we thought , since they gave us a refund for every day that we had agreed to be under quarantine in our cabin.
by late afternoon mrs h felt well enough to get up , but we decided to stay aboard - apparently ushuaia was one of the less interesting stops .
we walked the promenade deck and the ship-loading scene reminded me a bit of my work in the port of hamburg , where i worked before coming to canada .
you get up at 7 am - or whatever time you fancy - , shower , go for breakfast , take a couple of rounds on the promenade deck and go back to your cabin ... look , someone has made the beds , there are frsh towels in the bathroom ... it's all been taken care of

at 6 pm you dress for dinner , enjoy a wonderful meal , walk around the promenade back a couple of times ... you get back to the cabin and someone has made up the bed , placed some chocolates on the pillow case ... not hard to take - until you get back home and make your own breakfast , make your own bed , vacuum ... what a drag !


the cabin steward always kept our cabin 'ship-shape'

small container ship being loaded in the port of ushuaia
(the name 'hamburg-sud' brings back memories from my work in the port of hamburg)



...things to come...
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Reply Mon 12 Jun, 2006 12:52 am

Enjoying your pix and insights - love the pingus!
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Reply Mon 12 Jun, 2006 05:52 pm
ship's log :
monday , march 27 , at sea
- 8:00 am - rounded cape horn
- gale , rough seas , partly cloudy skies

we got up early this morning to "round the horn" ,
we had been told that our chances of actually seeing cape horn were only about 50:50 since fog and heavy rain will often obscure the horn .

it turned out that the weather was almost perfect ,
while a gale was blowing and the waves were 12 - 18 feet ,
the sun would break through and give us a wonderful of view of cape horn .

there is only one word to describe the scenery : SPECTACULAR !

not many passengers were out on deck , but we had our parkas and were outside on the promenade deck for about two hours while the m.s. rotterdam 'rounded the horn .

canadians travel with their parkas !







it's always good to know there is a lifeboat close by !

...no , that's not our ship !...
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Reply Tue 13 Jun, 2006 04:56 pm
ship's log :
tuesday , march 28 , port stanley , falkland islands
- 7:22 am - safely at anchor
- 3:42 pm - anchor away
- 3:48 pm - commence sea voyage

this was another day to get up early and watch the falkland islands come into view ,
the weather was quite pleasant , moderate wind , light swell ,
we were told that not all cruises manage to get passengers ashore
since the weather is somewhat unpredictable ,
had the weather been unfavourable , the ship would just have cruised around the islands and sailed on ,
there is no harbour with sufficient depth to allow ships to enter the harbour ,
ships anchor in an open channel between two of the islands and passengers are taken ashore by tender (fancy name for lifeboat).


welcome to port stanley

marilyn , our wonderful local guide ,
she came from britain 25 years ago to escape "the ratrace"
and found the right place ,
she said : "it's not for people looking for privacy ; we live in each others pocket ; if a husband ( Rolling Eyes ) is seen with another lady it'll likely be on the local newscast the next day or reported in the local paper ('the penguin news')"

plenty of rusting , abandoned boats

bridge built by the british soldiers ; there is still a fair-sized contingent of british soldiers , but they are located several miles away from port stanley

are you looking for a ship ?


airplane of the british antarctic survey on a stopover before returning to britain

still plenty of landmines courtesy of the argentines ,
since most are sitting in the bog , it is almost impossible to remove them - plenty of warnings are posted along roped-off areas

a reindeer brought over from south-georgia islands ,
several hundred were brought over to supply meat to the falkland-islanders ,
marilyn said that they have become pets , since no one wants to kill them

local whaling protest

care for a libation ?
a/t the penguin news - we all received a copy - , drunkenness is the most common 'crime' in the islands - speeding , cars run of the road ... just like in any other normal community


good-bye , falkland islands !
we had a great time !

mrs h and yours truly practicing for buenos aires ,
do you like our fancy footwork ?
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Reply Wed 14 Jun, 2006 04:13 pm
Hamburger, your photos are fantastic. The variety of scenery and ocean really give the feel of traveling in that part of the world.

Osso, knowing that I don't visit a2k regularly, sent my the link to your thread--I'm so glad she did. This is wonderful.

How about more pics of you and Mrs. H dancing? Those look like pretty hot moves!
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Reply Wed 14 Jun, 2006 05:41 pm
hi , diane !
thanks for your compliments .
have to do some more editing and load 'imageshack' - the garden also needs some attention !
probably will not be posting many/any more pix before the weekend .
going trough the editing process makes us realize how much we saw during our cruise - it's almost impossible to take everything in at the time .
having that small digital camera sure made a difference - have to admit that quite a few pix didn't turn out well because i forget to adjust for different light conditions , particularly where there were two and more light sources , such as for indoor shots .
of course , one can do a lot of editing , but at a certain point one realizes : 'can't make a silk-purse out of a sow's ear " .
hope you'll stay in touch !
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Reply Wed 14 Jun, 2006 06:34 pm
These are great.

hamburger hadn't provided a narrative for some of these when I first saw them (describing 800 pix would have taken more time than we had)

I'm really enjoying this!
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littlek part deux
Reply Wed 14 Jun, 2006 06:42 pm
Me too! I love this......
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