Georgias Chilly Winds & Warm Breezes

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By this time the wind had started to increase a little making the motion of the ocean a little uncomfortable for some of us. A chat with the Doctor to get some pills or patches and everyone began to feel a little more comfortable. At the lecture programme for the day began with Marijke giving a talk about whales of the southern ocean to our English speaking guests and Beau presenting the same subject in German.

At this time of year many of the baleen whales are making their way south to Antarctica for the summer season to feed on the rich bonanza of krill and other zooplankton that blooms in the cold waters during the summer months. We hope to see Humpback, Fin and maybe even a Blue whale on our voyage. By the time the talks were finished there was some time for fresh air on deck where conditions were still breezy but sunny.

After lunch there was some siesta time built into the daily programme and at Katja gave a photographic presentation to our German speaking guests to enable them to get more out of their cameras and take better photos during this trip and beau did his version of this topic in English. Over the coming weeks we will all fill SIM cards with hundreds of photos of our voyage. This was followed by the first of two presentations about the Falkland Islands given by Ali, who lived and worked in the islands for 15 years. This first part looked at the history and economy of the islands and gave an insight into island life on this isolated archipelago.

It was a great introduction for us. The final gathering of the day was the daily briefing in the lounge before dinner. This is a chance for us all to get together to look back on the day and look ahead to plans for tomorrow. On this occasion it was an opportunity for the staff to introduce themselves properly and for Andrew to outline some of the personal safety procedures on board once again. Dinner was served at 7pm and for many it was a celebration of the first day at sea survived!

It all seemed to go quite well, everyone finding suitable sizes in pretty quick order. After lunch perhaps some people took a snooze, or maybe a few laps around the ship, when suddenly there was a call over the loudspeaker—dolphins off the bow! As people gathered around the open bow deck 4 and even the sides of deck 5 most people seemed to catch at least a brief glimpse of the small group at least four! They were small and graceful and having fun, leaping and side-splashing and just generally looking like a pack of kids out playing after lunch.

The afternoon continued with two great presentations— first a review of the common albatross species we can expect to see during our voyage in English by Beau and German by Katja , then later Ali presented part two of her introduction to the Falklands series, covering wildlife we may see and insights about oil exploration and the economic future of the Falklands. As the day waned, the cloud cover increased and a bit of rain began to fall but this was accompanied by a relaxed and calmer sea—which is exactly what we are hoping for tomorrow morning.

So, those of us who are keen to get up at 5am to go ashore and see the , breeding pairs of black-browed albatross there will be crossing their fingers for good early-morning weather. Those who would prefer a later start may not work so hard to cross their digits, and hope for the Plan B option… which is ok… B often stands for Better! We will only know what the weather gods have in store for us tomorrow so until then, we will fall asleep dreaming of the amazing array of possible sights and experiences we have in store for us—wherever and whenever we are able to successfully get ashore!

Our plan was to land at Steeple Jason this morning. However, during the early watch this morning it soon became apparent that the swell was simply too high which made a landing impossible. While most of us continued sleeping the Plancius sailed towards Carcass Island. After a gentle wake-up call we were already approaching Carcass Island. From the white sand beach we walked across the dunes towards the first Gentoo Penguins. Most of them were covered with mud as it has been unusually wet during the winter months.

We then continued along and found some more Gentoos and there were also some King penguins! What a surprise to see those here too. Ali commented that she had never seen King penguins here so we were lucky to see them at this location.

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Some Magellanic penguins were peeping out of their burrows whilst overhead the Striated Caracaras were making close passes. The Oystercatchers and many ducks and geese were simply gorgeous to see whilst the sun was coming out. From the penguins and the freshwater ponds we continued our walk along the edge of the tussock grass and along the coastline. We were heading towards the main settlement at the head of the bay where we were welcomed by the islanders. There were not only tea and coffee available but an overdose of cakes.

The whole table was laid with all kinds of various cakes, scones and biscuits and the best thing to do was circling around table and otherwise make frequent visits to sample the variety on offer! The walk towards the jetty was along a colourful scenery with a variety of flowering plants, particularly the yellow Gorse. A sheltered rocky area on the far side of the beach of Saunders Island luckily offered a good landing spot. After a short walk along the beach the first colonies of Gentoo penguins were reached. They were either busy stealing little pebbles or were otherwise snoozing in the few rays of sunshine.

After walking across the island towards the other side we passed several more small colonies of Gentoos and then the first King penguins were spotted. They stood high and proudly, showing off their orange neck-patches to each other and many photographs were taken. And there was much more to come! A colony of noisy Rockhopper penguins were next in line and there was indeed a great deal of rock-hopping going on.

They were coming over to a little stream to drink some water and on their way back they were stealing more pebbles from neighbouring Rockhoppers. A bit further on we found our first colony of Black-browed albatrosses!

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We were now able to appreciate their size and wing-spans. A lot of bill-clapping and other pair-bonding activities were on display and it was quite overwhelming to see these huge birds take off or trying to land. It was not until we reached the last colony of albatrosses that the winds started to pick up. This colony was rather mixed and included many Rockhopper penguins and also Dolphin gulls and Blue-eyed Shags. Each bird was busy with either finding nest material more pebbles or pieces of vegetation collected by the shags whilst the albatrosses continued with their pair-bonding displays.

It was difficult to decide where to watch and what to photograph. With wind gusts starting to increase and gusting down the mountain even the heaviest of camera bags started to shift. We all got properly soaked on the way back but the smiles on our faces were not washed off — a biological overdose in true Falklandic style!

Well done to the crew drivers and Ali and Katja for their safe driving in difficult conditions. As Andrew and Katja made the wake up call this morning we found ourselves entering the outer harbour of Port William on our way towards Stanley. We could see the black and white lighthouse on the end of Cape Pembroke to our port side and the long white sandy beaches of Yorke Bay, beaches that were sadly turned into mine fields by the Argentinean military during the Falklands war in Before too long we found ourselves approaching The Narrows, the narrow entrance to the inner harbour and we could see the brightly coloured roofs of Stanley, the capital of the Falkland Islands ahead of us.

Shortly after breakfast, the Zodiacs were lowered and we were soon heading ashore to land on the floating pontoons at the Jetty Centre and to explore the town. The ride was a little windy and damp but nothing compared to the rough, wet conditions experienced at Saunders Island yesterday evening!

Many of us headed to the museum to take a look back in time at life in the Falkland Islands while the attraction of tea, cake and Wi-Fi was irresistible for some. Whatever the choice it was lovely to be on shore and to have the time to take a walk around the main part of town as well as some of the back roads amongst the older part of the town. Gift shops were visited and penguins souvenirs purchased, postcards and greetings cards were sent around the world.

Before too long it was time to make our way back to the jetty for the ride back to Plancius and get ready to set sail on the next part of our voyage towards South Georgia. After lunch there was some time to relax, edit photo collections and enjoy the views from the outer decks as the sun shone out of a clear blue sky. At , a little earlier than scheduled, Ali and her translating partner Katja invited us to the dining room where she gave a presentation about the black-browed albatross of the Falkland Islands and the conservation efforts in place around the world to try and save albatross populations from further decline at the hands of fishing fleets.

She talked about the work of Falklands Conservation and the research that dedicated staff are doing in the islands to monitor the breeding success of these iconic ocean wanderers. After afternoon tea, many people found a sheltered place on the sunny decks to enjoy some fresh air and spring sunshine as we made our way eastwards while other enjoyed the comforts of the lounge.

As is now the usual routine, the expedition staff invited us for a briefing in the lounge to look back on our Falkland days and look ahead to plans for tomorrow. Andrew had only just finished his briefing when whale blows were spotted not too far from the ship. The curtains were opened and cameras were collected in readiness for some more whales. Captain Alexey did a great job of manoeuvring Plancius into a good position near to the whales and we were treated to a wonderful sight of a female Fin whale and her juvenile calf.

They seemed quite curious about the ship and approached the ship on a number of occasions. We could hear their blows as the exhaled at the surface and the blows sent rainbow clouds into the air as the sun shone through them. It really was a very special encounter. So two days around the Falkland Islands had been fantastic and windy at times, but the wildlife was there in huge numbers and we all have some wonderful memories of penguins, albatross, Carcass Island hospitality and wet zodiac rides! Next stop, South Georgia! Our first night at sea after the Falklands was perhaps not the most soothing as the large swell continued for most of the night, serving as an overenthusiastic nursemaid rocking us to and fro but hopefully not out of!

Morning broke a bit grey, but with enough wind still to keep a healthy compliment of seabirds with us. The ever faithful Cape petrels and Black-browed albatross were joined by prions, a few Royal albatross, at least one Wandering albatross—looking quite the part of the awkward juvenile with a scruffy mottled head-cap of darker feathers—and guest appearances by a few White-chinned petrels, a Light-mantled sooty albatross, and even a sooty shearwater.

Also interesting were the few Grey-headed albatross, with their lovely-coloured yellow beaks and notably darker-shaded heads. The morning on-board scheduled activities began in earnest with learning about how to be a responsible visitor to South Georgia and Antarctica. Then the real fun began—the vacuum party. We need to make sure we do not unwittingly transfer non-native material between places we visit, as new introductions could lead to invasive plants changing the native ecosystem-- or even spreading a virus between animal colonies.

The first step was to go through all of our outer clothing and vacuum the velcro, cuffs, backpacks—any areas that could trap seeds. Everyone was very diligent in their cleaning activities, one gentleman vacuumed so thoroughly he sucked his glove up into the machine! After lunch and the final decks had come through the lounge to clean their outerwear, Jon presented a talk about island geology and plate tectonics, helping us to understand what exactly is an island and how the isolated islands that we have and will be visiting actually came to be where they are today.

Then Marijke continued our educational adventure with highlights about the different penguin species we will encounter on our voyage. We had a few lovely wildlife encounters as well— with the strap-toothed beaked whales and even hourglass dolphins paying us a visit! We all got an hour less sleep as we changed our clocks to the South Georgia time-zone. Despite this, some people got up early to admire the smooth seas. Just before breakfast the first strap-toothed beaked whales were seen including a small pod consisting of females and calves.

These unusual deep diving whales are usually rare to see but the calm seas helped us to spot them. The males have strange teeth that curve out of their mouths and over the top of their beak which mean they have to suck in their prey rather than bite them. A snow petrel surprised us all around mid-morning and soon there were more Snow petrels surrounding the ship — with at least 30 petrels circling the Plancius.

This little petrel normally is only seen in vicinity of snow or ice — so we were all pleasantly surprised! Maybe there was an iceberg remnant nearby or particularly good feeding somewhere.


The keen birders on board were very excited to see so many so close to the ship. During the morning Ali then gave a presentation about South Georgia, an introduction to the island explaining some aspects of history, the current Government management of the island and some of the ongoing projects such as the rat and reindeer eradication.

Ali spent 9 months living on the island and her passion for the place was clear to see. Whilst the Snow petrels continued circling the Plancius some tall dorsal fins were spotted in the distance. These turned out to be Killer Whale also known as Orca. Two sub-groups were resting at the surface after been foraging in the deep waters. A rare treat to see them in this stretch of water. By mid-afternoon some tiny pinnacles of land were seen sticking up out of the sea ahead of us. These were Shag Rocks and they rise straight up from the sea bed looking very strange in the vast expanse of blue ocean.

These areas with steep, underwater mountain slopes are often good for marine mammals as there are upwelling of water and nutrients so all the staff were out on deck to see what could be spotted. Sea conditions were still very calm and visibility was great so we all kept our fingers crossed for something. Groups of South Georgia shags kept flying past the vessel and the Snow petrels briefly visited the rocks but soon returned to our ship. Everyone was out on deck to watch as we sailed past and Captain Alexey did a great job of taking us so close to the rocks before we continued on our way to South Georgia.

As we set off on our way Joselyn gave a lecture on Plants explaining about how the plants in all the locations that we are visiting are so well adapted to their environment but can also be valuable indicators as to the environment and ecology in which they thrive and survive. With our arrival in South Georgia just a few hours away the Re-cap was a briefing of our plans for the morning landing at Salisbury Plain and the afternoon visit to Prion Island. A fantastic view for those of us still there! As the sun came up over South Georgia this morning many people were already up and either out on deck or watching our arrival from the lounge or their cabins.

We could see the mountains against the blue sky and it was promising to be a perfect day on South Georgia. We had arrived. When Andrew and Katja made the wake-up call we were already turning into the Bay of Isles where we would be spending the day and we could see the vast glacial plain of Salisbury Plain ahead of us edged by the Lucas and Grace Glaciers and backed by the impressive, Mt Ashley. We could see, hear and smell the 60, pairs of King penguins that breed here on the plain and as we approached the shore the musty smell of male Fur seals drifted over the water….

On shore the staff were ready for us in waders as the surf was dumping a little on the steep beach but we all got ashore safely and were met by a welcome committee of King penguins and Fur seals! What a wonderful wildlife spectacle. Many of us would have been happy to spend all day at the landing site but Ali flagged a safe route towards the breeding colony further along the beach and we made our way along the back of the beach to reach it. On the way we passed groups of displaying penguins and resting seals and crossed a number of small meltwater streams and finally reached the tussac grass at the edge of the colony where the noise of whistling chicks and trumpeting adults surrounded us.

As we navigated the mud to find a comfortable spot we were approached by the curious brown chicks that came to investigate the brightly coloured tall penguins that were visiting the colony. It was wonderful to just sit and watch the chicks and observe the adults displaying and demonstrating around the colony. Before too long it was time to slowly make our way back to the landing site where we watched the penguins and Zodiacs surfing onto the beach.

The staff did a great job of hauling the boats and making sure we all got back on board Plancius safely in time for lunch. During lunch the ship was re-positioned across the Bay of Isles to Prion Island where we planned to spend the afternoon. It was a logistical operation to ensure the three groups all experienced the same thing during the afternoon but the staff ran the operation brilliantly and we all landed, Zodiac cruised and had time for tea and cake on board the ship.

On shore the landing party was made up of Fur seals and Gentoo penguins. The male seals were beginning to select their territory for the breeding season, fighting off other intruders to their patch and herding the females into their small beach harem. It was a noisy place with flights breaking out from time to time.

The penguins just walked on through the mayhem, oblivious to it all! On the boardwalk it was an easy climb up to the viewing platforms where we could see a number of Wandering albatross chicks scattered around the summit of the island and a single adult in the distance that was nest building in preparation for the coming season.

The views from the top were spectacular with the mountains and glaciers of the island behind us. Out cruising we circumnavigated the island entering into little channels where the kelp was curling in the swell like snakes and all along the rocks Fur seals were lying in the sunshine. We were lucky enough to see a blonde, leucistic seal. They have a genetic flaw which means they lack some pigment in their fur. South Georgia pipits could be seen foraging along the tide line and Light mantled sooty albatross were flying in paired formation overhead.

It was a fabulous little cruise around the island. Back on board there was time to get changed before re-cap and briefing for the plans for tomorrow. Andrew explained the planned schedule, Marijke talked about Fur seals and Elephant seals and Jon gave a very informative, serious briefing about the waddling efficiency of King penguins…… Over dinner we all enjoyed sharing our experiences of the day, our first fantastic day here on South Georgia which brought penguins, seals, albatross and sunshine. A great day!!

Once chocolate bars were safely packed, all the hikers gathered with anticipation at the gangway, while those opting for a more relaxing morning were perhaps still in their bunks, turning over for one last snooze. Once ashore, hiking poles were distributed and rubber boots traded for hikers… and we were off! The steep ascent right out of the gate showed that everyone was fit to continue and so we went, uphill into the wind.

But, what scenery awaited us! The mountains were clear for us to see, and the bay and lakes below sparkling blue. The wind was insistent, and so ducking the head to avoid the brunt force of it created more time to study the beautiful rocks we walked over. The thin-plated fragments have been sorted into beautiful patterns by innumerable freeze-thaw cycles over thousands of years. And the sun was showing off the variety of colors in the rocks, much of it a rusty red color for the iron oxides becoming exposed.

We finally got up and over the highest bit, and were greeted by an expansive view down into Stromness Bay where we could see the Plancius arriving—a perfect greeting from our perch on high. And then they finally viewed the station, the minute figures walking back and forth, inspiring them to share a congratulatory handshake that they had found their way back to humanity. One last descent remained—for them and us! We were there to welcome the hikers coming up the braided stream channel from the landing site, and all of us walking on the river plain were greeted by the nesting Antarctic terns, reminding us to keep a move on and not bother them unnecessarily.

What a glorious day for a walk in the countryside! Back on board for a bit of food and rest, we then gathered in the lounge to hear a presentation from the South Georgia Heritage team about the rat eradication efforts and their plans for the future. Then we had the chance to go and toast the boss at the Grytviken cemetery before exploring the historic area of Cumberland Bay further. The tour given by the museum curator provided deeper insights into the life and activities of the station when it was active, but of course the museum was open for exploration and of course a bit of shopping.

We had plenty of time to explore the ruins of the station, the old boilers and metal works, and hopefully just spend some time sitting quietly listening to the barks and burps and bleats of seals echoing across the bay. The clouds had come in slowly over the afternoon so it felt great to be back on board and warm up a bit. More fun awaited though… we were treated to a back deck BBQ by our hospitality team, complete with mulled wine and festive music. They and a bit of beer and wine? The beach can be notoriously difficult to land on as big swells often create huge surf onto the beach and katabatic winds from the glaciers and mountains are common.

However this morning we had almost perfect conditions according to the Captain and we anchored in position off the beach. As we made our way ashore we could see hundreds of King penguins on the rocks to the right of the beach and we were met on the black sand beach by staff and a huge welcome committee of penguins and Elephant seals. The scenery was filled with colorful orange-necked king penguins whilst the giant elephant seals were lying on the beach, pretending to be fast asleep.

Occasionally the beach master, with his harem of females roared a little, his deep voice echoing off the nearby hillside and then others, the satellite bulls would respond but shuffling away from the dominant male but generally it was all was relatively peaceful. It was curious to see how sub-adult males still quite big were trying to make them-selves invisible whilst they slowly creeped up towards the females hoping the beach-master would not detect them. This however never was unnoticed and one loud roar was usually enough to deter the sub-adult back into the water. Once everyone was ashore and Andrew had given a briefing about our landing for the morning Ali led a route along the back of the beach, out-maneuvering various curious Fur seals until we reached the river.

She had been along here earlier to scout a suitable crossing point and, with help from staff in the deeper, fast flowing parts we were all able to cross over, albeit in a long diagonal traverse rather than a direct crossing. From here we followed a flagged route up to the moraines overlooking the main colony of King penguins. As we made our way up the last slope to the viewpoint the noise of the penguins increased and as we reached the top it was an orchestra of trumpeting adults and whistling chicks that met us along with a view that will stay with many of us for the rest of our lives.

Along the beach were thousands of penguins and chicks stretching out as far as the eye could see. Everyone sat down to just take in the view, it was almost too big to photograph! We all stayed a while to enjoy the view and were then able to take a leisurely walk back to the landing site enjoying views of the penguins along the river banks and the seals on the beach.

Back at the landings site we were able to photograph more King penguins as they swam in the surf and then came ashore and roaring Elephant seals. A white morph giant petrel was also seen flying over the beach and colony. One king penguin returned from foraging at sea had such a big belly that he fell over in the surf and could not get up any more. He had to push himself on his belly further up the beach whilst we and other penguins were finding it rather amusing! Before too long the Zodiacs were shuttling us back to the ship ready to download and edit another few hundred photographs Back onboard lunch was waiting for us and we were able to rest our legs a bit after a longer walk and a busy few days.

We enjoyed the scenery whilst the Plancius sailed around to Godthul. This translates as Good Cove and with the winds increasing outside of the bay it certainly proved to be a good place to anchor and go ashore. Although, the wind was still picking up a bit we managed to land and found the beach was littered with old whale bones from the whaling station here. Soon the hikers made their way through the tussac grass, outmaneuvering various 4 to 5m long elephant seals along the way to reach the Gentoo colony. It was incredible to see the grass nests that the penguins had built ready for the breeding season, impressive constructions using beaks and feet!

We all enjoyed watching penguins stealing vegetation from other nests and taking it back to their own nests looking very pleased with themselves! The first group of walkers headed up to the lake and then up the hill to the saddle of the mountains. The plan was to try for the m summit and with reasonable conditions, albeit a little windy they made it up the steep scree slopes to the top.

The views down the coast of South Georgia were fabulous. The medium hikers made their way from the lake to the higher colonies of Gentoo penguins that had made the long trek from the sea to almost m above sea level. From here the group walked out to a lower viewpoint before making their way back along the grasslands to the lower slopes once more. On the way back down an unusual coloured Gentoo penguin was detected — it was almost all white — not a true albino but a so-called leucistic animal. Very unusual to see such an odd-coloured animal!

Meanwhile out in the bay some of us did a zodiac cruise along the shore where Antarctic terns were seen flying just over our heads. The zodiac glided through the sea kelp where Kelp Gulls were foraging and penguins were seen porpoising close by.

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It had been a very memorable day here on South Georgia and everyone was feeling a little weary as we made our way to re-cap with the staff in the lounge. Here Andrew briefed us about the Expedition Morning we had ahead of us, Jon talked about the mountains of South Georgia and Katja told the eerie tale of Shackleton and his men feeling the presence of the 4th Man on their crossing across South Georgia We had spent the night in the shelter of Moltke Harbour inside Royal Bay and had all enjoyed a very comfortable night on board after some busy South Georgia days.

As Andrew and Katja made the wake-up call the anchor was lifted and we started to re-position across the bay to Will Point. It was here that we were hoping to take a trip ashore or in the Zodiacs to see if we could find some Macaroni penguins. As we made our way across the bay the clouds began to descend onto the mountains and the winds increased and by the time we reached our position off shore it was raining and visibility was reduced to a few hundred metres.

The staff set up the telescope on deck to see if we could find the elusive Macaronis but with a moving ship and rain it was almost impossible to focus on the shore. The Captain and Andrew made the decision to return to our original position to try a landing at Moltke Harbour. As the Zodiacs were lowered the light rain turned into heavy rain and by the time we reached the beach we were already wet, on the outside at least!

We all had visions of this being a bit of an anti-climax to our fabulous South Georgia days but for some it proved to be the absolute opposite as the Elephant seal pups, or weaners as they are locally known kept us entertained with their antics in the river and their curiosity on shore. The month old pups in the river were sleeping in the fast flowing water and play fighting with each other, thoroughly enjoying their new found playground since the departure of their mothers.

As we stood on the side of the river a few pups started to come towards us and before too long we had pups looking into camera lenses, sniffing boots, chewing trousers and generally making mischief, much to the delight of all of us. It was a real privilege to be so close to these young wild animals who have yet to learn their fear of humans. Some people chose to go for a rainy leg stretch up to the waterfall and inland from the beach.

It was nice to be out for a bit of a walk before a few days back on board sailing to Antarctica. Before too long it was time to leave our Elephant seal friends and make our soggy way back to the ship. Despite the wet weather this final landing had proved to be a real treat for all of us.

There was time to warm up and dry off before lunch and as we enjoyed lunch the ship navigated towards Cooper Bay where we hoped the transit the narrow channel between Cooper Island and the mainland. This was another opportunity to see Macaroni penguins in the water and indeed some people were lucky enough to get a glimpse of them through the rain.

Mist and waves. From here we continued on down the coast where the weather condition improved and by the time we turned into Drygalski Fjord the rain had stopped and the seas were calm. The Captain took Plancius right up the fjord towards the Reisling Glacier at the head of the bay. On the way we passed jagged black peaks, remnants of the super continent Gondwanaland, hanging glaciers and small icebergs that had calved from the glacier.

There were Cape petrels, Snow petrels and even a Leopard seal was seen lying on one of the ice floes. At the end of the fjord the Captain held the ship in position for a while so we could take photos and watch the small ice calvings from the front of the glacier. From here it was time to head out and head west towards Antarctica, the next destination on our voyage. Weather conditions improved in terms of visibility and we were treated to a wonderful rainbow as we left South Georgia.

During the late part of the afternoon the first part of the movie about Shackleton and the Endurance Expedition was shown in the lounge. The final speaker was Hans the Flenser who told us tales of Old Big Blue and his fate at the hands of this mighty whale…. These whales are so poorly known as they are deep divers and rarely seen… so to be able to report another data point to researchers interested in these species is an exciting opportunity.

Besides keeping one eye to the sea and what we might still come across, today felt like a day of catch up—on photo downloads and editing, on reading, on sleep… and also a bit of prep for our next adventures. We went through the vacuuming process again, to clean South Georgia off of our equipment so we can approach Antarctica with fresh gear and no threat of introducing non-native species to that pristine land. Everyone was well-practiced in this task so it was a quicker affair than last time and lots of good cheer to boot! The afternoon found us learning about ice and glaciers—in English with Jon and in German with Katja.

Thursday night…a slight chance of a shower or thunderstorm early otherwise mostly clear and breezy and colder with a low in the upper 30s. Thankfully the severe threat was no big deal. Gert out and enjoy your Sunday because its going to feel amazing with temps in the upper 70s with partly cloudy skies. A dry cold front moves through tonight setting up another beautiful day on Monday with a high near No changes with just an isolated chance of severe weather. So far everything is as expected. Next is the potential for some afternoon storms to develop. Nothing has really changed from my previous thinking of isolated severe possible with the primary threat being hail and strong winds.

There are two rounds to deal with for Saturday. Round 1 should arrive before sunrise in the form of rain and thunderstorms. The severe potential with round one is low but not zero. Round 1 should be over and done before noon. There is a higher potential that we could experience a severe thunderstorm with the primary threat being hail and strong winds. The threat level is similar to what we went through earlier this week where we had numerous reports of hail and I also saw some rotating storms on radar.

Could a tornado develop in one of these storms? It is likely? But we do need to keep our eye on things as the afternoon develops just to stay on top of it. So what is imminent? Rain and thunderstorms with an isolated severe chance. We will keep our eye out for anything more. Good Friday morning everyone!

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After a chilly start to the day with temps in the upper 30s to low 40s we should climb to near 70 under sunny skies. An area of low pressure will slide from west to east across Missouri and Kentucky into Virginia. This will spread an area of heavy rain and possibly thunderstorms into our area during the AM hours on Saturday. The rain should start after midnight with the bulk of the precip happening before noon Saturday. There is a slight risk for a severe thunderstorm with the primary threat being hail and high winds.

Tonight…rain moving in after midnight with a thunderstorm possible towards morning. Low in the low 50s. Saturday…showers and thunderstorms likely with the best chances being before lunch and then again late afternoon. High in the low 60s. Sunday…sunny and windy and warmer with a high in the upper 70s.

Go Thursday afternoon everyone. Last Wednesday evening our cold front brought a quick round of shows and thunder amounting to. So far for April we have received 7. But believe it or not, we are right about normal for the year with Any who, today is a bit chillier than Wednesday and we should really feel it tonight as we will likely dip down into the upper 30s.

We have one more dry day on Friday before another round of rain moves in before sunrise Saturday and lasts into the afternoon. We will probably end up with another half to one inch of rain. The good news is that Sunday is looking mostly sunny at this time with warm temps and breezy conditions. Tonight…mostly clear and chilly with lows in the upper 30s. Isolated frost is possible in the low lying valley areas. Saturday…mostly cloudy with rain. Rain could be heavy at times with the bulk of the rain happening during the AM hours. High in the mid 60s. Sunday…mostly sunny with a high in the mid to upper 70s.

I will be breezy with winds gusting to 25 mph or more. All the rain has either diminished or moved on to our east and south. Oh well. Here are the details… Tonight…a slight chance of a shower early then clearing skies.