Let the countdown begin. There is something special about being less than one hundred days from the start of an epic adventure; for me, it marks the beginning of active anticipation. Chile, Torres del Paine, Antarctica, and finally, a return to Argentina. This expedition is sure to inspire abundant awe and wonder, and I feel a tightening in my gut. Butterflies. A grin that will likely last for months.
When I first discovered this particular itinerary for Antarctica, I resolved to see the continent as described on Natural Habitat Adventure’s website: by sailboat. Our small group of seven will fly from Punta Arenas, Chile, to an airstrip on King George Island on the Antarctic Peninsula. From there, we board the S/V Australis. I’ll spend the next two weeks aboard, with six other audacious travelers and five experienced crew. We’ll see penguins and seals and whales and albatrosses. We’ll see immense sculptures of blue and white ice. We’ll kayak in survival suits, and spend up to three nights camping in tents on the ice. I’ll cross the Drake Passage, which has been described as the world’s most unforgettable sea crossing. Did I mention we’ll be in a sailboat?
The Physical Rating of this journey is “Extreme Adventure”. As is typical for me, I am a little bit afraid, and a whole lotta excited.
Before we leave for Antarctica, I’m going to spend a couple of days in Patagonia, hiking and horseback riding among the Paine Massif. The inn where I’m staying faces an unobstructed view of the Torres del Paine granite peaks. I’ve seen photos of this grand range, and felt immediately, spiritually connected. I cannot begin to imagine what it will feel like to stand before it.
Ninety-nine days. Continent number six … here I come!
#nathab #naturalhabitatadventures #rioserrano #chile #patagonia #antarctica