I have been to Deception Island, part of the South Shetland archipelago, on two occasions. The Island, located in the Bransfield Strait, is the caldera of an active volcano (with the most recent eruptions in 1967 and 1969) and is reached via a narrow and impressive entrance – Neptunes Bellows. The Island was home to Fur Seal hunting for a short period during the 1820s and then in 1904 a whaling station was built.
Our destination was Whalers Bay on the east of the Island with the backdrop of Mont Pond.
As far as Shackleton was concerned, Deception Island was a possible safe landing place for the three lifeboats from the Endurance – Dudley Docker, Stancomb Wills and the James Caird – depending upon weather conditions and other circumstances at the time. He also saw Deception Island as a place where they might be able to attract the attention of passing whaling ships.
On the day of my visit in 2016, in the late afternoon, we were blessed with a clear day and blue skies. I spent an hour or so, photographing the derelict buildings in the landscape before returning to the ship – MS Expedition – for dinner.