Exploring the World by Sail from A to Z

Jeff and Zia's adventures aboard the catamaran Hekla

12 January 2015 | 62 31'S:59 47'W, Antarctic Peninsual
09 January 2015 | 65 54'S:62 52'W, Antarctic Peninsual
07 January 2015 | 65 15'S:64 16'W, Antarctic Peninsual
04 January 2015 | 64 19'S:62 55'W, Antarctic peninsula
31 December 2014 | 54 48'S:68 19'W, Ushuaia
27 December 2014 | It's 6am must be Miami...
26 December 2014 | Guatemala
09 June 2013 | 17 35'N:80 42'W, Caribbean sea
06 June 2013 | Jamaica
04 June 2013 | 18 28'N:77 57'W, Montego Bay
02 June 2013 | 19 20'N:78 49'W, on passage Cayman-Jamaica
23 May 2013 | 19 43'N:82 58'W, south of Cuba, NW of Cayman
19 May 2013 | 24 34'N:81 49'W, Key West, Florida
30 April 2013 | 23 25'N:85 38'W, Gulf of Mexico
27 April 2013 | 21 15'N:86 45'W, Isla Mujeras
19 April 2013 | 18 17'N:87 50'W, Xcalak
17 April 2013 | 15 34'N:89 12'W, Lago Izabal, Guatemala
10 April 2013 | Rio Dulce
10 April 2013 | 15 39'N:88 'W, Rio Dulce
01 April 2013 | 16 05'N:88 32'W, Southern Belize

Whale tales

12 January 2015 | 62 31'S:59 47'W, Antarctic Peninsual
by Jeff
The weather continues to be good for down here, light wind, mostly cloudy, temperature a little below to a little above freezing. We are making our way north to the planned flight out tomorrow from King George Island to Punta Arenas in Chile. Depending on weather, we take advantage of the best options for outdoor exploration. Two days ago in beautiful flat water conditions, we kayak circumnavigated Enterprise Island. This is a location of former whaling operations, including a sunken 210-ft steel whaling ship that is partly exposed and to which we moored overnight. Also on that kayak trip we experienced an ice-fall tsunami, where a chunk of ice calved off of a glacier nearby and created a large wave, but fortunately we were in deep water at that moment and it was just a smooth, large ride (if taken bow-on). Here we did our only camping excursion, on an island of about 30 feet elevation (plus 20 of snow). Nice to get out of the boat for the whole night, watching Antarct ic terns defending their nests from the kelp gull attacks.

While motoring north through Murray Channel between Graham Island and the continent we had the best whale feeding show ever. Two slow moving humpback whales were feeding on krill, and seemed unperturbed by our presence. We could see the whales circle deep and blow bubbles, which apparently concentrates the krill in a group that makes for a more fulfilling mouthful. We drifted around there for over an hour, freezing our little shutter fingers off.

It's about over now. S/V Australis is the best of the handful of charter yachts that work in Antarctica, with hot fresh water showers, semi private cabins, lots of capacity, and a courteous and well seasoned crew. A sailing experience this was not, and given the territory, probably for the better. She is a tough, heavy steel vessel with a modest mast and sail plan, which provided some roll stability and economy when conditions permitted. Certainly this was a much more intimate Antarctic experience than a cruise ship, and we are totally thrilled with the experience!
Comments
Vessel Name: Hekla
Vessel Make/Model: Atlantic 57, Chris White Designs
Hailing Port: Fort Collins, Colorado, USA
Crew: Jeff Lebesch, Zia Zybko
About: Jeff has been sailing for 11 years, and has completed two singlehanded TransPac races on his former trimaran Hecla. Zia is enthusiastic about adventure-exploration by sail
Hekla's Photos - Main
Interior photos of the boat
20 Photos
Created 29 November 2011
Photos of Hekla under construction, Sept 2010 to Nov 2011
30 Photos
Created 4 August 2011

S/V Hekla

Who: Jeff Lebesch, Zia Zybko
Port: Fort Collins, Colorado, USA
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