5 tips for sea kayaking in Antarctica

Worth every penny! The sea kayaking option to add-on to my G Adventures Antarctica cruise wasn’t cheap, but I enjoyed my last kayaking holiday in Greece and decided it would be worth paying the extra to have a slightly different view of Antarctica, along with a bit of exercise on the trip.   With expectations of being able to have 4-6 kayaking sessions, the weather on our cruise was fantastic and we were able to paddle for 8 of the excursions.  In addition, most of the time we were able to do the regular landings that the rest of the boat got to do – so we had almost 40% more time off the boat!  From kayaking alongside humpbacks, leopard seals, penguins and numerous icebergs, in conditions from sunshine to sleet, wind and rain, our kayaking expeditions covered everything!

Kayaking with Kathy 2012-03-12 001
Click above to watch a video, or click here

Some small things that would have been good to know before I embarked:

1. Bring a pair of dishwashing gloves.  These fit over liners and under the pogies that you use to hold the paddle, and whilst they didn’t stop me getting completely wet, they helped a lot! Luckily another kayaker lent me a spare pair!

2. Bring handwarmers. This was a fantastic tip from Luann, one of the guides. Simply slot them in between liner and kitchen gloves.  They certainly kept me cosy – only wish I knew the tip sooner!

3. Bring a waterproof camera.  Whilst for the first few days I managed with my small point and shoot (wrapped in a plastic bag) – it did get wet – and took time to get out.  A fellow traveller then lent me their waterproof camera and from then I didn’t feel I was missing out on any shots (thanks Ian and Judy).

4. Bring a head camera. This was something I hadn’t seen, but the people who had these head cameras caught so much more footage – including the one ice calving we saw – while the rest of us recorded a mental image only.

5. Wear a bright coloured hat.  This makes it easier to identify photos that other people may have taken of you – especially if they are taken from on deck.

Kayaking with Kathy 2012-03-12 006


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