During breakfast, National Geographic Endurance pulled into Bahia Fortescue, hoping for some protection from the fierce winds that were blowing across Patagonia for the past day. Bahia Fortescue is within the Francisco Coloane National Marine Park, named for Francisco Coloane, a renowned Chilean writer of the 20th century.
Fray Pedro de Valderrama conducted the most southern Christian mass in the bahia in 1520, and a larger cross commemorates the event. A small beach near that cross allows landing by Zodiac in settled weather. Alas, such weather was not to appear, and morning operations were abandoned due to very disagreeable weather, including rain and high winds.
Undaunted, we returned to the Strait of Magellan and headed east towards Punta Arenas. A number of naturalists presented informative lectures, and at teatime, we enjoyed a special “laptop gallery” of guest photos in the Ice Lounge. The galley team offered fresh scones with hand-whipped cream and berries while everyone wandered around the “gallery” of about 20 laptops that guests set up to show off their work.
As dinner began, the ship was secured at the Punta Arenas pier, and a few guests took advantage of the clearing weather for an after-dinner stroll along the city’s boulevards.