We’ve been on the Beagle Channel for almost a week now, all the team members have gradually arrived in Ushuaia and we’ve been complete since Tuesday.

What luck and how nice that everyone has actually landed here safe and sound, in good spirits and with a lot of anticipation in their fortunately complete luggage.

We moved into a large apartment together and explored the city and surrounding area from here.

Although the crew’s only meeting in Berlin was almost a year ago, we were able to pick up seamlessly where we left off. The first impression is confirmed: the chemistry is right.

The days fly by.

We hike together through lichen-covered jungle, enjoy fantastic views of the Beagle Channel and Ushuaia, share huge plates of carne asado, taste pisco sours and Patagonian beer. We decide to go on a day trip to the east, which turns into a wonderful day where one experience is more beautiful than the next.

We load the underwater drone, which has finally arrived after a month-long odyssey, into the car – there is more space in the apartment than on the Selma – to test it out. Unfortunately, after unpacking numerous boxes and cartons, it turns out that some of the accessories don’t fit the drone model. Unfortunately, we won’t be able to use the second, swiveling camera or a gripper to pick sediment samples or similar from the seabed. But after some puzzling, various downloads and updates, at least the rover is ready for use. A final test in the water is still pending.

We bring huge amounts of provisions onto the ship and stow everything on board, sorted thematically: vegetables and fruit in the cool forepeak, meat in the bilge surrounded by cold water, everything else in the depths of the Selma, under the benches, table and floorboards, between the backrests and the side of the ship, in cupboards, lockers and drawers. It is not easy to keep track of what is stowed where, but it can be said with certainty that even with double the travel time, we do not have to go hungry.

The mountaineering team (Alan, Karen, Jan, Christiane and Piotr) check a first part of the equipment – the pulka sleds are prepared, the two tents are set up and checked for completeness – the strong wind at the harbor gives us a tiny taste and some practice for more difficult conditions.

On Thursday evening we bring all our luggage on board and move into our berths: Alan and Peter get the quietest one amidships, Gerhard and Jan opt for the aft berth, the women move forward: Karen and Ursula to the starboard side, Unda and I into the port berth.

It will be our first evening together in the Selma mess, it feels good for the moment and whets our appetite for the many more to come. The next day, Friday, we are expecting Wojtek and Ewa (our co-skippers), and our departure from Argentina is also planned for Friday.

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