Wednesday, 26 September 2012 14:21
On October 15th an expedition team from Northwest Passage will start a week long adventure that will explore the history and animal life of South Georgia Island. The team will be posting daily updates on the Wilderness Classroom website. We hope that you will follow this amazing adventure, email their team questions and learn about one of the world's most remote places. If you have any questions please let us know.
South Georgia Island is a small island in the middle of the South Atlantic. It is more remote than the North or South Poles! Because of its location near the Antarctic Convergence (the meeting of warm and cold ocean currents), and also because of its remoteness, it is one of the best places on Earth to see a wide variety of Antarctic animals including a variety of penguins, seals, whales, birds and plant life. It also has a fascinating history. In 1916, after leaving the shipwrecked crew of the "Endurance" fighting for survival on Elephant Island off the coast of Antarctica, Ernest Shackleton, along with a handful of his crew set out on a "Hail Mary" attempt at rescue. Against all odds they successfully sailed their beaten down life boat, the "James Caird", to South Georgia Island, 1500 km away. Upon landfall they realized they were on the wrong side of the island - and if they had any chance of reaching help it lay in a daring overland crossing, with out maps, specialized equipment or sufficient food. The route was a mystery, as was their chance of survival. But they forged on, with only a compass to guide them and wood screws from the James Caird fastened to their ragged boots for traction. A restless 36 hours later they reached the Stromness whaling station, and when the officers of the station looked upon Shackleton, whose long matted hair and blubber-smoke-covered skin made him unrecognizable he simply said, "My name is Shackleton." We are very proud and excited to be guiding a small group of explorers on a re-creation of Shackleton's route across South Georgia Island. In addition to making the crossing, the team will be observing and photographing the amazing wildlife that call South Georgia home. We hope you will join them through daily updates at WildernessClassroom.com!
Map showing South Georgia Island and the South Sandwich Islands (c)wikimedia commons
Baby Elephant Seals on South Georgia Island (c) The Northwest Passage
Top Image: King Penguins on South Georgia Island (c) The Northwest Passage