Jan 26-27, 2023
Today we drive the 5 hours from Ecocamp to arrive to Punta Arenas by 11 AM. Here we must then get an antigen test before we can be approved to board the ship the next morning. We pass (hurray) and check in to our hotel, the Dreams, for the night. We receive a briefing this evening about what to expect for the flight and boarding of the vessel the next day, as well as an update on if the weather will cooperate with our plan. The visibility of the ground over King George Island must be to a certain height for the pilots to ensure a safe landing, otherwise, we cannot take off.
The next morning we get the all-clear and head to Punta Arenas airport. Here we board our flight, a DAP airlines charter plane, and fly down to King George Island, which is a muddy/gravel-covered base with the runway and a Chilean and Russian base on it. We are lucky in that vans are awaiting to drive us down to the shoreline. Here was take off our other boots, and get into our muck boots we will use for the duration of the cruise on the Sylvia Earle, grab lifevests, board zodiacs, and board our ship. We enjoy dinner and safety briefings the rest of the day while we sail towards the Antarctic Peninsula.