Antarctica Part VIII – Deception Island

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I first read about the Deception Island while wondering around the decks during the Drake Passage.  The introduction of the island sounded fascinating: a volcanic island with deep history of whale industry.  I could see the smoke streaming out from its center, and whalebones scattered on its edge, telling the tales unknown for hundreds of years.

This is the highlight of this trip.  Many folks onboard couldn’t wait to join the famous dip in Antarctica.  The crew told us to come in swimsuits and trunks.  It is know that the hot volcanic bottom often warm up the ocean above, making it warm enough to have a decent bath.  We came up to the island at around 5am in the morning to see the first glimpse of the sunrise.  It was freezing that I hesitated quite a bit about taking my warm jacket off in exchange for cold Antarctic water.

By the time I got to the swimming place, people already started getting in and out of the water.. “is it warm?” I asked. “No, it’s not, we can’t find warm spots…” they replied… “yes, we have warm spots” the guys in zodiac said. “it’s somewhere in the middle over here.

”but most of the places are cold, and you might not have the time to find the warm water before you run out of the time” I was warned. After some serious thoughts, I decided to give it a try since I’m already here, “1, 2, 3, RUN!”

Nope, I could not find any warm water, I tried to run back as fast as I could but halfway coming back from the icy water, the guys in zodiac said, “no, the water is here, try here”.. so I ran back accordingly

Unfortunately, I could not find the warm water there either, and by then, my feet were already frozen enough that I was having a hard time walking back….

I was SO COLD by the time I got on shore!

Too keep me from being disappointed, the staff said, “Jenny, try this.” They wiped away the top soil near the water, “put your feet on here and feel”. So I put my feet on the layer of soil under the top soil and I could indeed feel an immense warmth coming out from the ground. Wasting no time, I laid my entire body on the ground to warm myself up – and of course, not disappointing some people’s cameras either.

From Antarctica Part VIII – Deception Island, posted by Jenny Zheng on 8/31/2012 (38 items)

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