Cuverville Island was our morning stop and the Gentoo penguin colonies were rampant with squawking chicks. There were so many adults and chicks at the colonies that we started calling it Penquinville.
Our afternoon and evening was spent at Danco Island. Again these rookeries were rampant with chicks, in fact bigger, probably older, chicks than we saw earlier in the day at Cuverville Island.
The north side of the Island is an array of penguin highways and the busy little creatures were plodding upward while a few slid down toward the water on their bellies. Sometime when watching the penguins come from the sea and take 100’s maybe 1000’s of their small penguin steps up to the nest and chick, one has to wonder does it take more energy, in calories, to climb the hillside than the bird obtains by feeding on krill in the sea. But clearly there remains food and energy for the rapidly growing chicks.
Our Polarcirkle boat cruisers were treated to close-up view of a pod of Humpback whales feeding on swarm of krill. In addition there were several Leopard seals were sighted both in the sea and on ice-floes.
Tonight is a camp-out night. We started by going ashore through some beach boulders and carrying our sleeping bags. This was accomplished without any trouble as we are now well experienced as we keeping our balance in moving from the Polarcirkle boats to the aluminum steps to the wet rocks to the beach. Setting up the tents and placing the floor insulating mats went quickly and after a ‘good-bye’ briefing from Karin the Expedition Leader. We were free to crawl into our tents and unroll our sleeping bags for as much rest and sleep as the wind whipping the tents would allow.