January 14: Pebble Beach

Steven Dutch, Professor Emeritus, Natural and Applied Sciences, University of Wisconsin - Green Bay

I was richly impressed by the variety of ways to get killed on this island. We found a route down this slope, but there were a couple of hair-raising spots on it and it was an exhausting climb going up. We'd come back from a Zodiac trip chilled and with numb feet, then start climbing, and end up sweaty and overheated by the time we got to the top.


Because of the schist pebbles, we dubbed this Pebble Beach. Here are two Weddell seals and some fur seal pups.
Maarten and Roy examine the schist

And Birds

A cormorant
A chinstrap nesting with its chick.

The Schist

We were hoping for some nice exotic blueschist-facies rocks, but what we got were plain vanilla greenschist-facies metavolcanic rocks.

Elephant Island

Named not for the African kind, but the seal kind. That's where Shackleton's men waited for rescue. The blueschist-facies rocks we'd hoped to find are over there, the next field season discovered.

 Skua Nest

These skuas nested just behind our camp. They blend perfectly with the rocks.

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Created 18 February 2000, Last Update