EXPEDITION FIRE & ICE VOYAGE 7214 DAY 1

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Day 1 - June 13, 2012 - Reykjavik, Iceland 

By Juan Carlos Restrepo, Geologist

Co-ordinates: N 64º09'00", W 021º56'21"
Weather: Sunny with scattered clouds Air Temperature: 9ºC Pressure: 1018 hPa Wind: 5 knots


Here we go again! After a quick turn around, a new adventure begins. We are now going to sail from Iceland to Svalbard. I am looking forward to the prospect of sailing such a long stretch of the North Atlantic Ocean. Six years ago I got bitten by the polar bug and soon I am going to get my fix. This voyage is taking me back to the Arctic that I love and need…

We will start off in Reykjavik and sail north along the west coast and then east along the north coast. We will visit Grundafjordur tomorrow, then Vigur Island where we are hoping to see some puffins, and then Husavik, where we are going to see what Iceland is mostly about, and great geology!

We will then sail to Jan Mayen, a truly off the beaten path kind of island and the most northerly sub-aerial volcano in the world, and finally we will end our trip with 5 days in Svalbard, where we are going to enjoy some spectacular arctic scenery and wildlife, and of course -hopefully- some polar bears.

At noon we started embarking our 122 guests. They were greeted at the gangway on deck 5 by some of our Expedition Team members and hotel staff. First they needed to be checked in, so they were initially directed to the Panorama Lounge for that purpose. The procedure was simple - hand in a passport, receive a suite key and have a photo taken.

Once finished with the embarkation formalities our guests were shown the way to The Restaurant for lunch, after which everybody headed over to their suites to unpack and settle in.

At 4:30 our Expedition Leader and Safety Officer carried out the mandatory emergency muster drill in the Theatre, which was followed by the Zodiac briefing. During this briefing our Expedition Leader Robin West explained the procedures in place on board regarding zodiac operations. At 6:00 the Silver Explorer singled up the lines and sailed from the port of Reykjavik.

Shortly thereafter we met again in The Theatre, where our Expedition Leader Robin West introduced some of the Heads of Department on board, as well as the Expedition Staff. He finished these introductions with a destination briefing about our planned activities for tomorrow in Grundafjordur.

As most people had been travelling for a while to get here and many were jet lagged, the evening was a quiet one. After a delicious dinner almost everyone went back to their suites to relax and have an early night. 

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