My first South Georgia Island expedition was in 2012; we circumnavigated South Georgia before heading to the Falkland Islands. It would be three years before I would return for my second visit. South Georgia is located in a remote part of the world and is fairly difficult to get to, for me it required several flights. My journey started in New Jersey where I took a flight to Dallas Texas. Next I flew to Santiago Chile. I spent a two days there before continuing on to Puerto Arenas and then to Mount Pleasant in the Falkland Islands where we boarded our vessel for the 3-day, 900 mile sea crossing.
The raw, natural environment provides a beautiful sanctuary and breeding ground for the plentiful wildlife found on the islands. During both of my trips we made several landings, including; Right Whale Bay, Gold Harbour, Fortuna Bay, St. Andrew’s Bay and Salisbury Plain. I tried at most of the locations to include the landscapes to give a sense of place to my images.
Gold Harbour is a small bay that is located 5 miles south-southwest of Cape Charlotte, along the east end of South Georgia. It was named for the golden light that would hit the cliffs in the morning. It was also one of my favorite landings. While I was there on my second visit the conditions were difficult for photography. It was wet/slushy and messy. Visibility from time to time was almost zero.
My targeted subjects for both trips were the variety of penguins that call South Georgia home. I had the opportunity to observe and photograph six different species of penguin, including; Gentoo, King, Macaroni, Rockhopper, Chinstrap and Magellenic. The King Penguins were my favorites and just seeing one up close in-person was way more than I had ever hoped for. During our time at the big colonies we saw many “Oakum Boys.” The young King Penguins were named because their brown color that looks like the rolls of oakum (rope made from hemp fibers) once used to caulk old wooden ships.
Have you been to a remote location just to photograph the unique flora and funa? If so feel free to share your own images in the comments below.