No Fly Zone

Helicopter onboard MV Ortelius

This trip we had something special. In the Beagle Channel we picked up two helicopters that we planned to use to find an Emperor Penguin colony and land people there. That was the plan at least… We did find the colony, but the ice around it was in very poor condition, which made landing impossible. And the next days the weather also prevented us from doing anything with helicopters. Too much wind or too big waves (causing an unstable ship) or poor visibility kept the choppers on the ship. I was fortunate enough to have one flight towards Seymour Island, but then we quickly had to cancel operations and return to the ship as the conditions deteriorated again…

Really frustrating for both passengers and us staff. But it also puts us back into our place, not we, but mother Nature decides up here…

Arjen Drost

Arjen is a Polar ecologist, nature photographer and full time expedition guide on expedition cruise ships in both Polar regions. With his pictures and stories he likes to show the beauty of these very fragile and threatened places.

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