Due to a broken fuel pump, my voyage to Antarctica aboard Silversea Cruises’ Silver Cloud Expedition ground to a halt last week before it really had a chance to start. After three days of being stuck in Puerto Madryn, Argentina due to weather and mechanical issues, Silversea made the decision to cancel the cruise, refund everyone, and repatriate them. Wisely.
It’s only fair to recognize the herculean efforts of the crew of the Silver Cloud, and the 22-member expedition team, most of whom flew with us from Puerto Madryn back to Buenos Aires, met us at the airport, aided us at our hotels, and saw us off on our flights home. My hat is off to them.
These folks came up with last-minute, complimentary tours for three straight days in Puerto Madryn; a town that we were originally scheduled to be in for just nine hours. They kept us busy. The crew kept us eating multi-course meals and plied us with the finest adult beverages. Silversea’s staff did their best to keep things rolling along until it became apparent that it was time to pull the plug.
As of this writing, Silver Cloud is the proud new recipient of a shiny fuel pump and is scheduled to depart Ushuaia, Argentina on December 1 for what promises to be her new first voyage to Antarctica. And since the season is still ahead of us, it makes sense to take a look, in pictures, at some of the most dramatic changes to this ship that now holds 254 guests on regular voyages, and just 200 when sailing the polar regions.