Wednesday, 12 August 2009

Summer night, falling stars

A something in a summer’s noon —
A depth — an Azure — a perfume —
Transcending ecstasy.

And still within a summer’s night
A something so transporting bright
I clap my hands to see —

Emily Dickinson

Monday, 10 August 2009

Port Lockroy, a touristic Thule in Antarctida

Port Lockroy (Lat. 64°49'S, Long. 63°30'W) is a natural harbour on the Antarctic Peninsula, situated on Goudier Island.

After its discovery in 1903, it was used for whaling and British military operations (Operation Tabarin) during World War II and then continued to operate as a British research station until 1962.

Port Lockroy has been fully restored to its 1962 condition when it was closed. The buildings were renovated in 1996 by a team from the British Antarctic Survey and since then opened to visitors during the Antarctic summer.

The Trust operates the site as a ‘living museum’, by the proceeds of a small gift shop. It is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Antarctica

The restored Base’s two buildings are the boathouse and the Bransfield House (accomodation for the summer crew, post office, shop and museum).

The main base building, Bransfield House was the first permanent British government building on the Peninsula, and has been much modified over the years.
Mail is picked up by a passing ship and delivered to the Falkland Islands, where it is transported to England.
The museum itself was pretty small. It used to be a research station that housed a maximum of 9 people.

Port Lockroy is a beautiful 800m-long natural harbour offering shelter and a secure anchorage to large vessels. Port Lockroy is surrounded by beautiful landscapes of mountains, icebergs and bays, frequented by antarctic fauna.