Corinthian II Antarctica Cruise

May 8th, 2008, 08:59 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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Shorter paragraphs would make reading easier.
Jed is offline  
May 10th, 2008, 09:37 AM
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Thanks Jed, I am always in such a rush!!
As we sat down to breakfast on the Sunday morning (not that I really ever knew what day of the week it was!!) people at the next table were wearing Port Lockroy 't' shirts. They were not familiar, which was strange, but if I recall I had been sampling the Ukranian version of a margarita the night before. I asked if they had been to Port Lockroy before as that was the first landing of the day, and they replied that they were the staff from Port Lockroy and had come on board via zodiac for breakfast and showers!! Did I feel like a fool!!
The manager gave a talk on the British Antarctic Heritage Trust which restored the station in 1994. After we landed we could all get our souvenir shopping taken care of whilst supporting the Trust!! The location had been used as a base for factory ships in the early 1900s and then as a research station and now houses a museum which was very interesting. The Gentoos surrounded the entrance to the station and the manager talked to us about how they were informally researching whether the nesting penguins were affected by all the visitors as compared with the nesting penguins on the part of the island where visitors were not allowed. It was found that the visited penguins were doing slightly better, and the staff of three surmised that this was because the presence of tourists warded away predators!!
It was wonderful to watch the penguins and to take photoes of the Union Jack flapping in the wind as we left Port Lockroy for Wienke Island. Here we saw a whalebone display on the sand and met some Welsh mountaineers who had chartered a yacht of sorts. It had taken them 4 days to traverse the Drake so any fears I had had were allayed on our journey back. Our vessel was certainly huge compared to theirs!! Blue-eyed shags were nesting and we had wonderful observations of the parents and chicks and incredible nests!
In the afternoon we took the zodiac to Paradise Bay. This housed an abandoned Argentine research station which was burned down in 1984. The doctor at the station at that time was so distraught at being placed there that he started a fire so that personnel would have to be evacuated back to the mainland of South America!!
Most of us hiked 350 feet up a cliff and slid down the snow field back to the bottom. This was not a very wise thing for me to do as I have a bad back, but away I went and unfortunately held my legs up at just the right angle to gain so much momentum that I lifted off the snow at one point into the air and bounced back down. Prior to that it was such an exhilerating feeling, but as I gained speed and forgot to lower my legs to slow down I feared the worst! However, all was well and I survived. I would have regretted it if I had not tried, but beware if you do this and check at the top how to keep your speed down!! The smart ones also tucked their parkas (kind of) into their ski pants as the potential of snow burn on the lower back between the riding up of the jacket and the top of ones ski pants was quite great!!!!!!
We had another wonderful experience after this where we cruised around in the zodiacs observing the Crabeater, Weddell and Leopard seals on the ice floes. We were also so fortunate as we were in one of the last zodiacs and got so close to three humback whales that we got the viewing of a lifetime!! The added bonus was that Trevor, who was back on the boat, took photoes of us from the boat (our zodiac within feet of the tail of the whale)!! We stayed there for quite some time until the captain demanded that all zodiacs return. There were about three zodiacs in the water when the whales appeared, but all on the boat got a wonderful view as well. This was my most favourite day, although all the landings were so varied and the terrain differed so much that that is a hard decision to make.
Philbill is offline  
May 14th, 2008, 12:38 PM
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 28
Welcome home Philbill!
Your current travel schedule is making me want to go take a vitamin.
Hope you had a fantastic time and much good food in the land of my Forebears.
Thanks so much for the latest episode, it makes the waiting easier. We're discussing the Arctic for '010. You go first and let us know
maztoz77 is offline  
May 16th, 2008, 08:15 PM
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Posts: 526
Back today and just checking in!!
The Arctic is certainly a possibility!!!!!!
Trying our first 'regular' river cruise next month. We have been on the Nile and from St. P. to Moscow, but this will be from Prague to Budapest.
Off to Sacramento on Sunday but maybe I will get another posting in tomorrow.
Philbill is offline  
Jul 7th, 2008, 12:35 PM
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 52
Hi Philbill, wanted to talk to you about the antarctica cruise you did in Feb. We are booked for the Feb 8th cruise on the Corinthian II. We are both well-heeled travelers, but I tend to have a problem with motion sickness. My question is Do you think someone with almost severe motion sickness could survive the trip (using the patch or other means) without being miserable. Because it is so expensive (we booked level 5) I would rather not go. I really appreciate your input. Debalyin
debalyin is offline  
Jul 7th, 2008, 02:11 PM
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You should book the lowest level and in the middle of the ship for the least motion.
Louise is offline  
Jul 7th, 2008, 02:46 PM
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Hi there:
We had a great deal of rocking wherever we were on the ship going through the Drake. The people who wore patches were groggy a lot of the time.
We used wristbands and took either 1/2 or 1 Bonine a day and were fine. You could have a rougher crossing or a much smoother one. It is not predictable.
The leader was great in that he told us when we got on the ship on Day 1 that it would start to get rocky that night so to start any medication, as you have to take it before you experience any motion sickness for the meds to work effectively. That is something good to remember...take pills the first day, and certainly Bonine rather than Dramamine.
I was told by a doctor that the wrist watch type of motion sickness device is used by sailors and that it worked well. One person had one on our ship and we tried it, but it felt like a constant small shock or sharp prick on the wrist.
Patches were very prevalent but our leader warned that people wearing them would not have a clear memory of the voyage!! My sister cannot wear a patch; she becomes very ill 24 to 48 hours after returning home from a cruise.
Once you are through the Drake all is fine until you return through the Drake. It is worth risking to me, but then I was okay. If you are going to be worried about it from now to when you go then that is something to consider.
We had a cabin at the front on one deck up from the very bottom deck (the restaurant is on the bottom deck). The people in the very front cabin on each side had their windows boarded up for about 4 days through the Drake (there and back) and the balconies had their doors boarded up too. I would not have liked to have had an 'inside' cabin so to speak for a few days. The lift will not operate in rough seas so you have to climb the stairs (no real issue). There are ropes strung throughout any open areas so that you can grasp hold of something as you walk to the lounge, for example.
It is a FABULOUS cruise.
If you decide not to go and have not been to the Galapagos...go there instead.
It is also an incredible place.
Any other questions PLEASE ask!!
Philbill is offline  
Jul 7th, 2008, 02:51 PM
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 52
Thanks Philbill for the information, both you and eenusa have provided invaluable info. I guess I will just have to think about it for awhile, we have until November to get a refund. Thanks again.
debalyin is offline  
Jul 7th, 2008, 04:30 PM
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Don't forget that the Corinthian II has stabilizers and many of the other vessels do not. That certainly helps.
Philbill is offline  
Jul 7th, 2008, 08:25 PM
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Wow, just opened my Conde Nast Traveler July magazine and there is a long article about the Corinthian II.
Philbill is offline  
Jul 8th, 2008, 03:52 AM
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Previously posted: "Patches were very prevalent but our leader warned that people wearing them would not have a clear memory of the voyage!!"

I suppose the memory thing might be a reaction to wearing the patch, but it wasn't a side effect that either my husband or I experienced. We have a very clear and wonderful memories of our trip.

Don't get me wrong, I am not promoting the use of the patch - however, people react to it differently and the user will not know how they will react until they use it.
eenusa is offline  
Jul 8th, 2008, 11:34 AM
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My wife and I used the patch (1/2) when we went to Antarctica, were not affected, and have good memories of it.
Jed is offline  
Jul 8th, 2008, 06:48 PM
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If you do wear 'part' of a patch, it would be wise to consult these boards as to how to do that.
The article I referred to (Conde Nast)also cautions about the patch and short term memory loss, but again it always depends on the individual.
I just know how some of the passengers reacted when I was onboard and how I ran out of Bonine supplying them on the return through the Drake!! They did great with the Bonine by the way!
My sister, as I said, was violently ill twice after cruises when she used the patch in the Med.. She was in bed for a week, but had felt fine until 24 hours or so after she returned home. If you read the instructions (I supplied the patches for her!!!!) the potential reactions were described as if it were her!!! However, she wore the patches the whole cruise as she does get sea sick very, very easily. On a light note she vows never to cruise again when she is literally unable to walk, but forgets (as with childbirth!!!!!) a few months later!!
I don't mean to lecture or be negative, but if you are paying all that money you need to be aware of possible consequences, and not necessarily only the extreme as with my sister.
In fact, if the patches work more power to you and go to Antarctica!! It is unbelievable, and by the way the Conde Nast article on Corinthian II can be found online!!
Philbill is offline  
Jul 9th, 2008, 12:02 PM
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 52
Thanks Philbill, the Conde Nast article is the reason we booked the trip and now really looking forward to it because of all of you. Will definitely consult my doctor about the patch. Thanks
debalyin is offline  
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