Saturday, February 28, 2009

Post Number 3: Rounding Cape Horn & Ushuaia

Another funny penguin video we took at Punta Tombo:

Day 6 – Rounding Cape Horn

The sea is getting choppier, the temperature is dropping (50 degrees), the sky is intermittently sunny and cloudy, and the wind is whipping. A perfect day to round the Horn! Drinks in hand, we toast the occasion (Budweiser in honor of our friends on Cape ran out of Glenlivet).


Day 7 – Early on the morning of February 8th we wake up to a great sunrise and our first glimpse of Ushuaia, Argentina.

Its claim to fame is that it’s the world’s southernmost city and the capital of Tierra del Fuego (Land of Fire). It’s separated from the mainland by the Straits of Magellan and is known for its remote location, extreme weather, and natural beauty. We leave the ship, look for a taxi to hire and we find Mario.

David’s Spanish lessons are paying off, as he quickly negotiates a deal and we are off! He asks Mario to take us up to the highest elevation on the east side of the city for panoramic pictures,

On the way down Mario drives us through a beautiful community with wonderful homes and gardens. Much to Barbara's delight the "lupine" are in full bloom!

Next we drive to the base of the glacier (Garibaldi Pass).

On the way to the national park we stop to view the southern most golf course in the world:

Then we drive 10 miles west of the city to explore Tierra del Fuego National Park – wildflowers, glaciers, snow-capped peaks, streams, wild horses, peat bogs. It’s absolutely beautiful. We ask Mario to stop again and again…and he accommodates our desire to photograph everything!

At the end of the road into the park (on the shore of the Beagle Channel) we stop to mail post cards at the southern most post office in the world. We also get a facsimile of our passports stamped (no one told us to bring our real ones...bummer). The postmaster is impressive.

Toward the end of our 4 hour “tour”, I ask Mario to take us to the general aviation airport in Ushuaia.

We stop in and buy some cool patches and hats and I chat with a local airport mechanic who, when he learns I am a pilot, lets me have a look around.

After a great day with Mario, he drops us off on Main St. for some last minute shopping before we return to the ship.

Stay tuned for the Beagle channel, Straits of Magellan and more.


  1. Enjoyed the Piper content. :-)

    Thanks for blogging, Dave. You're missing some nice snowy weather up here. -Jack

  2. Hi - Thank you so much for the lupine photos. They're one of my favorite flowers and they grow so serendipitously and spasmodically in my garden. I love the fields of them in Maine and looks like that's what they do at that bottom of the earth.

    Perhaps David should start working on one of those handle bar moustaches - quite distinguised on that dude in the photograph. Two storms here today - one lapsing into the other. Nice to be sitting in my study and seeing something besides the snow out the window.


  3. Glad you found an airport. Thanks for posting these. The penguins were cute. They're predicting 10+ inches of snow here tomorrow, so don't come back yet!