My travel to Palmer Station in March 2000

Getting to Palmer station includes a travel by aircraft to Punta Arenas, Chile, followed by a four-day cruise on a research vessel. After the Magellan Street, which divides Fireland from the rest of South America, is passed the journey continues along the coast of "Terra del Fuego" before conquering the Drake Passage between Fireland and the Antarctic Peninsula. The Drake Passage has the most stormy sea on Earth but during my crossing it was surprisingly calm. The inclination of the ship rarely exceeded 20º but the Captain told me that a tilt of 45º is not uncommon in bad weather. The last day of the cruise provides gorgeous vistas on the many snow and ice covered island, which are scattered before the coast line of the Antarctic Peninsula.

The "Laurence M. Gould", which brought me to Palmer Station. The photograph was taken in the harbor of Punta Arenas before start of the cruise.

Conquering the Drake Passage. Notice the inclination of the vessel compared to the horizon and water shooting onto the lower deck through an opening next to the red container!

Palmer Station with some icebergs and island in the background.

My work place at Palmer Station. In the foreground is the top-part of the SUV-100 UV spectroradiometer piercing the roof. In the background is the glacier surrounding the research station. Since the weather was rather warm during my stay, huge pieces of ice "calved" from the glacier several times per hour. Watching the pieces break and fall into the ocean accompanied with a thunder-like noise is quite impressive.

Close-up of a huge piece of turquoise glacier-ice waiting for its plunge into the sea.

Walking on the glacier.

View from the glacier on vast snow covered mountains in the vicinity of Palmer Station.

Iceberg 300 meters away from the Station.

Impressive iceberg piercing the fog.