On the morning of November 9th, 2016 the election in the United States was decided and we boarded a boat heading South from Tierra del Fuego. The Beagle Channel led the way to the great Southern Ocean and the infamous Drake Passage, known for the roughest seas in the world. Our goal was the great white continent of Antarctica, the largest wilderness on the planet and the only landmass not governed by a single nation. We left as skiers embarking on an adventure and returned forever touched by a land of un-imagined beauty and wildness.
Below are selection of pictures from the lenses of Sun Valley Trekking guides: Joe St.Onge and Christopher Marshall. Please click on the upper left photo to click through the pictures in chronological order with captions or simply scroll down to enjoy the collage from this magnificent expedition.
The surreal coast of Antarctica
The character of the penguins never ceased to bring a smile
At the southern tip of South America, Ushuaia is the furthest south city in the world and a long way from anywhere else…
Ushuaia, Argentina is the southernmost port and the launching point for Antarctica.
High above Ushuaia are towering peaks and glaciers. here is the Marshal Galcier: our training ground before heading south.
Ellen and James about to sample some southern corn for the 1st turns of the new season.
On the approach to the Marshal Glacier, hiking through alpine tundra
Chris and Joe found some surprisingly good powder skiing in Ushuaia before the team arrived
Joe dropping into cold powder on the Marshal Glacier high above Ushuaia and the end of the earth.
Our trusty ship!
Setting our course South through the Beagle Channel
Fin whales escorting our boat along the Drake Passage
Our 1st landfall was on Half Moon Island in the South Shetlands where we were greeted by the local residents
Ski tour on Half Moon Island
Ellen on Half Moon
These Chinstrap Penguins make a home at this rookery here on the NE corner of Half Moon Island
Livingston Island and it’s spectacular glaciers
Cristina and Kate enjoying the sunny cruise
enjoying the views on deck
The 1st iceberg of the journey sighted off the South Shetlands
The rocks approaching Deception Island
The abandoned whaling station on Deception
The Oil tanks on Deception
Zodiacs being efficiently unloaded from the ship
The zodiacs provided our mobility to land on the ice
Ready for action
Our next landfall on the volcanic sand beach of Deception Island
Climbing the walls of this massive caldera on Deception Island
Chalky powder provided fun and fast carving conditions
Chris, laying into the chalk
This bay on Deception island served as a sheltered harbor and base for whaling operations
Bob, taking it all in
A surreal setting to finish a ski on black sand beach of Deception
Stoke level was high after this glorious ski and zodiac tour of the bay
Approaching the Antarctic Peninsula
The beauty of the bergs was sublime
Rough waters can make for chilly approaches on the zodiacs
A steep climb with crampons was required to get from the ocean to the glacier above on Nansen Island
Climbing from the shore
After navigating through pack ice in zodiacs and climbing a steep headwall above the water with axe and crampons, the stolke level was high when the skis went on
Rick and Joe
What a setting!
The view atop Nansen Island
Wally, heading toward the sea
Massive cornices form on the ridgelines
Chris belaying skiers back to the zodiac pickup
Josh, pointing it to the ocean
An old ship wreck locked in the ice off Enterprise Island
Bob cranking on perfect corn snow
Cristina showing a little Canadian style
Chris Davenport enjoying the peel-away corn
Chris heading for the bergs
Transitioning at the beach for another lap!
One of the many penguin rookeries we skied by
Swimming penguins are a treat!
Chris, getting psyched for the Polar Plunge
Joe and Wally make the leap!
Kelly, the pirate, embracing the moment
Joe and Chris
Bob and Kate
We were all invited to Cristina’s birthday!
A little wine with the view?
The birthday girl!
A fitting gift for the birthday girl
Early morning arrival at Charlotte Bay
Seals at home
Climbing out of Charlotte Bay
What a place!
Figures on a landscape
Endless mountains dwarf the skiers
Huge crevasses split the glaciers
peering into the blue hole
Yuhko and a very deep crevasse
Keeping our promise to not let Cristina fall in a crevasse, but maybe just peer into one…
Bob and the blue hole
Shooting the gap!
Our trusty ship locked in the ice
Chris and James go for a steep line on Idaho Peak
amazing mosses on King George Island
What a place!
Transitioning from the boat to the ice with the locals undisturbed
Amazing colors on King George Island
The team atop King George Island
Bob, cranking the powder
James loving the dry snow
hard not smile
The team loving the ocean side corn
King George Island
Bob and Kim getting their bearings
a detail of our route on the peninsula
too many toasts to count
Sun Valley on Ice, the all start team!
Farewell to the ice!
and the sun did finally set as we made our way back north.