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jpalbny

Silver Cloud #1001 - Ushuaia RT via South Georgia - January 4, 2020

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Cool pix, Les - I'd be happy to see you post more!

 

Fletcher, it seems that most of us had trouble getting home from Santiago, not Ushuaia. True, the charter down to Ushuaia and the transfer to the ship left something to be desired, but at least that ran (for the most part) on a reasonable schedule, without delays. Your itinerary does sound more relaxing, though. Wish I had time for it.

 

Even if things do go well, though, it is a good 24h of airports and airplanes to get home from Ushuaia.

 

So here I am at 5:45, thinking about work shortly, and wondering where the sun is... It is dark here, and 9F. I miss the tropics in Antarctica!

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OK JP, here goes..... Bare in mind they are all (bar one) from 1982.... and I've added a couple for good measure (as it doesn't take a second to upload!)

 

His ship seen in the photo first posted is HMS Andromeda and that can also be seen in this batch - F57 - which he served on a couple of times, but at this period from Feb 81 to June 83

 

The Sub is the Sante Fe which I'm told was disabled enough to stop it submerging and then eventually towed out from the bay and sunk at a much later date.

 

Are those buildings still there?

 

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Edited by les37b

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The next few are the seas on the way to South Georgia and a force 12 storm with 30 to 40 foot waves..... and on arrival..... the storm had passed and completely calm seas as you can see in the photos above.

 

Not comfortable even with stabilisers I bet!

 

 

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The next photos show HMS Andromeda leading the way, followed by the Bristol and Invincible..... the second one you can just about see Hermes in the mist. This was leaving the Falklands after the end of the war but thought it was a nice sequence to add that I know will be of interest to the Naval guys on the forum.

 

 

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And the final is a little different from the usual Tower Bridge entries, but was from his photos I'd thought I'd share. That was 87 and the ship was HMS Plymouth. I doubt it was open for lunch when it moored next to the Belfast!

 

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Special thanks to Tony for "loaning" the photo's which have been posted with his consent.

 

 

 

 

Edited by les37b

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13 hours ago, QueSeraSera said:

Hoping for the best for you all, glad you are home safe JP.  The posts of the cruise have been so much fun to follow, thank you jpalbny, stumblefoot and RachelG. let me know if anyone figures out a way to cruise sans flights.

Agree it has been an interesting cruise to follow but the before and after are appalling .

In answer to your query we decided after 21 years of travelling the World with SS without any real pre or post cruise hassle we would restrict all future cruising to UK/UK cruises which all start and finish with a local taxi taking us to and from Tower Bridge,London or Southampton as appropriate.Pleased to say it has worked well as a solution to avoiding Airport chaos over the past few years.

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Great photos, Les. Those seas were not exaggerated. I was on the SS Uganda and there were times when we had to strap ourselves into bed and it was impossible to walk without a keen grip on the handrails. Even the servers in the dining room were throwing up. 

 

Its fair to say we were much more concerned at times with the real presence of huge seas than the abstract notion of an enemy submarine! 

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That one looks familiar!

 

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Great pics, Les, and thanks for posting. Busy with work today, more later.

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Hi All!!

 

I really enjoyed reading your "blog" here as we are leaving in two weeks on the cloud.

I did post a topic with these questions and hoping you may be able to answer them! Thank you!!!

 

1)  what items did you pack you were really happy you did, wish you had left home, and those items you wish you had taken with you?

2)  How many thermals are a good number? Socks?

3) Did you pack your own jackets or just go with the parka provided? Parka provided--did you go up one size or keep to your normal size?

4) I read in the paperwork sent to us--dinner was men in jackets and ties? Is this correct?

 

Thank you!!

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I’ll save everyone the drama, but after 61-hours, our trip home is finally over.  Glad it’s done.  


I’ve been a top tier elite of American Airlines’s frequent flyer program for years.  As awful as the situation was in Santiago, it pales in comparison to our treatment at Dallas Ft. Worth.  I can only imagine how horrific it had to be for travelers without any status or traveling in coach.  IMHO, AA continues to self destruct under the leadership of Doug Parker.

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1 hour ago, yahooelvis said:

1)  what items did you pack you were really happy you did, wish you had left home, and those items you wish you had taken with you?

2)  How many thermals are a good number? Socks?

3) Did you pack your own jackets or just go with the parka provided? Parka provided--did you go up one size or keep to your normal size?

4) I read in the paperwork sent to us--dinner was men in jackets and ties? Is this correct?


I think you’ll find what people bring on a voyage is exceptionally varied in opinions.  We were a party of three and brought 3 large suitcases, 3 carry-on roller bags, and 2 backpacks. But, keep in mind, we have a wide variety of ailments that forces us to bring our own bed linens, bath and body care, as well as laundry products.  Therefore, our answers to your questions are as follows:

 

1) We were really happy we packed extra OTC medicines and Chinese herbs for the treatment of the common cold and cough, as well as a wide variety of clothing highly adaptable to the varied weather conditions encountered.  I wish I had left my tie at home.

 

2) Three.  This allowed us to be in clean garments everyday without having to use the launderette daily.

 

3) Yes, we packed our own rain jackets and pants, as well as thermal lined ski pants.  There were days we only needed a shirt and rain gear, and days when we needed two layers including fully lined parka, neck gaitor, and two ear coverings.  I never overheated or got cold.  As for the parka, we all had to go up one size.  And, the company renting the gear didn’t even provide the correct sized garments based on our order for two of us.  So, we had to waste time trading them for garments that fit us.  Couldn’t believe it.

 

4) Rarely ever saw what you describe.  While I wore both jackets that I brought, no jacket or tie was ever needed should a gentleman prefer not to wear one.  In fact, for both the Venetian Night and Captain’s Farewell Party, the dress code was listed as “Casual” in the Chronicles.

 

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10 minutes ago, Stumblefoot said:


I think you’ll find what people bring on a voyage is exceptionally varied in opinions.  

 

 

LOL. My response (on the separate thread) proves that point so well!

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17 minutes ago, jpalbny said:

 

LOL. My response (on the separate thread) proves that point so well!

No mater what you tell tell them they will bring too much. It's just the right of passage and they will get it just right the second time to Antarctica. 

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Wonderful trip, exceptional expedition staff. Arrived home on time with no delays, thank you United! Absolutely miserable charter flights arranged by Silversea. We were in last row, window and aisle. For return, requested seat change due to a new knee replacement. Assigned same seats. Very swollen knee both ways. Still icing. Not happy.

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With how expensive this trip is , why does SS continue with such a miserable charter experience.Really can impact on the perception of the whole trip.

Originally, I planned to fly to Ushuaia on our own from Connecticut, via Atlanta and BA (EZE), then I was apprehensive given the potential unreliable SA airlines- didn’t want to miss the “boat”, even though we are leaving early.

My knees can hurt sometimes , and I am apprehensive about the zodiac embarkation/disembarkation- but hadn’t thought about the cramped charter seat

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We made it home at 10 pm.  I was exhausted so unpacked today.   The return trip was brutal to say the least, worse for Stumblefoot .  At least we got home last night.

 

as far as things that I brought that I didn’t need— you don’t need hiking boots or shoes, just the waterproof boots.  They got our parka sizes wrong as well, even though I had ordered the correct sizes online.  I ordered a small and an XL.  They gave us 2 mediums.  Go figure.  We got it sorted, but it took a while.

 

i brought thermal tights.  I wear these in surgery and they are great.  I get them from uniclo.  I brought 4 pairs.  

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Correction to my post, #212. We sat in window and middle seats in the last row, not aisle and window. 

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13 hours ago, RachelG said:

as far as things that I brought that I didn’t need— you don’t need hiking boots or shoes, just the waterproof boots.


Yes, totally agree.  The SS rental boots were fantastic.

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14 hours ago, kathy16 said:

 

My knees can hurt sometimes , and I am apprehensive about the zodiac embarkation/disembarkation- but hadn’t thought about the cramped charter seat

Kathy16, I recommend packing one (or two) of those neoprene + velcro knee braces you can get at the drugstore. I took mine to Greenland because I didn't want to be that person who couldn't get out of the zodiac! It was really useful--didn't use it all the time but it was nice to have when the knee decided to act up.

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Thanks for the recommendation- will stop at drugstore on way home from work- May not need but just in case. 😮

So excited about upcoming trip!

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Thank you for sharing your experiences and the great photos!  We sail on The Explorer Feb 3 - can’t wait!!!

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On 1/21/2020 at 3:15 PM, Stumblefoot said:

I’ll save everyone the drama, but after 61-hours, our trip home is finally over.  Glad it’s done.  


I’ve been a top tier elite of American Airlines’s frequent flyer program for years.  As awful as the situation was in Santiago, it pales in comparison to our treatment at Dallas Ft. Worth.  I can only imagine how horrific it had to be for travelers without any status or traveling in coach.  IMHO, AA continues to self destruct under the leadership of Doug Parker.

 

GREAT NEWS!
 

Yesterday, I contacted American Airlines to explain the difficulties we encountered flying them and proposed a customer service solution. I am happy to report that AA has agreed to cover our out of pocket expenses and have credited each of our frequent flyer accounts with 52,500 miles. This represents roughly 90% of the amount of miles we spent to fly from SCL-DFW-DEN.


This is how post-travel customer service is supposed to work.


I AM VERY PLEASED WITH THIS OUTCOME!!!

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Good job Stumblefoot, but you certainly earned every mile.  Now since I have real internet, my two favorite pics from the entire trip.  Which took exactly 7 seconds to upload!

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F2C2FBAA-AE18-4A35-9A60-66950B9803DA.jpeg

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Absolutely stunning pics Rachel. Thank you all so much for the running commentary. It was amazing to follow along with you all.  I’m glad you’re all home safe and sound and I’m sorry to hear of all the hassle that you had. 

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Thanks to everyone who’s contributed - it’s been great following your trip. The pictures are spectacular.  It’s cheered me up in a very dull January!

 

We are considering next year but would not want any flights or pre-cruise hotel. Do you know if anyone did it this way?

 

Thanks.

 

Lou

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1 hour ago, Louby-Lou said:

We are considering next year but would not want any flights or pre-cruise hotel. Do you know if anyone did it this way?

 

I've heard that it can be done. Haven't tried. That said, here are a few caveats:

 

1. The pre-cruise hotel is pretty nice. And I am not sure if you get any kind of a refund for not using it. 

 

2. If you go to Ushuaia on your own, best to build in some wiggle room (that is, come a day or two early). From what I've heard, flights often get canceled or delayed due to weather, even in the summer. If that affects the SS charter flight, obviously they would wait for the plane. If if affects you as an individual, independent traveler... well, then, you've missed the boat and the next time you'll see it will be at the end of your cruise. There's no way to catch up with them until they come back to Ushuaia.

 

3. There are no commercially available direct flights from Santiago (Chile) to Ushuaia (Argentina).

 

From Santiago, you'd have to either fly south somewhere in Chilean Patagonia and drive to Ushuaia - which I've never done, but looks hard. Google says it's an 8-hour drive from Punta Arenas (largest, most southerly airport I know of in Chile) to Ushuaia. I believe them. The route also requires that you take a ferry.

 

Or, you could fly into Buenos Aires instead of Santiago. They have direct flights commercially available from BA to Ushuaia. But...

 

Why do you want to avoid the charter flight? Is it because we've described it as uncomfortable? While it is a basic economy product, I've flown LATAM and Aerolineas Argentinas a bunch in South America last year. ALL of their planes are like that. So if you fly LATAM from BA to Ushuaia on your own, there is no business or First-class product available. You may find PE if you are lucky - I never did on any of my flights though it was rumored to exist.

 

So keep these points in mind should you choose to go on your own. If you want to do this to be more flexible, and to see other parts of Chile besides Santiago, that may be a good reason to do so. If you want to avoid the charter flight because you think that you can find a better flight down to Ushuaia, that may be more challenging.

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