Armchair Travel Club: Antarctica


Carol Fielding

How do you get to Antarctica? And why would you want to go there? Kerstin Seifert answered those questions at the February 24 gathering of the SBR Armchair Travel Club.

Kerstin’s desire to go to Antarctica started in 1970 when she saw a TV program about expedition-style travel to Antarctica that had been pioneered by a Swedish/American company, Lindblad Expeditions. Fast forward to 2005 when the trip moved from her bucket list to actuality in celebration of her 60th birthday.

Kerstin and her husband, Art, traveled from Missoula, Montana (where they were living at the time) to Salt Lake City to Atlanta to Santiago, Chile and finally to Ushuaia, Argentina where they boarded the ship. This was their first experience with group travel, but they were definitely not disappointed. Lindblad Expeditions had formed a partnership with the National Geographic Society, so they had both Lindblad Expedition leaders and National Geographic Antarctic experts on board a ship of 110 passengers.

Through Kerstin’s narrative, we learned that Antarctica is the fifth largest continent and has four characteristics. It is the coldest continent in the world; it is the windiest continent in the world, it is the driest continent in the world; and it is the continent with the highest average elevation—9,000-10,000 feet. Kerstin also shared a very important environmental component of the Antarctic region called the Antarctic Convergence. What happens in this zone is one of the reasons that Antarctica is referred to as the world’s weather factory.

Kerstin shared over 100 slides with the group—all spectacular! They included icebergs, glaciers, ice shelves, animals, side trips from the ship on the Zodiak landing craft, Deception Island with the huge penguin colony, volcanic rock formations, and so much more. We marveled at how well she remembered so many details from this trip taken in 2005, and she stated that it was because the experts and leaders on board provided them with great material, as well as the journal that she kept and photos taken. Thank you, Kerstin, for sharing your travels!

Grab your favorite beverage at the Bistro, come to the LaMesa/LaMontana Rooms and join us for more travels, including:

April 7: Tonga with Elmer and Karen Klavetter

May 5: Spain/Portugal with Pilar Borm

June 2: Ireland with Jean and Mark Morgan

July 7: Sicily/Italy with Duane and Paula Roggow

Contact Carol Fielding at [email protected] to get on the email list or sign up to do a presentation.