HA! A blog post by an Antarctic tourist about a paper studying the blogs of Antarctic tourists!
*Very* fun idea! If you want to know how tourists are behaving/interacting with environment and wildlife of Antarctica when they visit, you could hitch a ride with a bunch of tour groups and spy on everyone– or you could sit at home in your warm office and study what these tourists have reported/posted on their blogs!
I was momentarily terrified I was quoted at some point for doing something wrong, as I fit the paper criteria– people who visited Antarctica 2007-2010 and visited Deception Island. Alas, they stopped collecting June 2010, so I wasnt (we really did try to do everything right). But I went there. I saw the ruins at Whalers Bay. Some in my group went ‘swimming’ (volcano powered hot-tub- but we didnt dig into the sand. they just ran into the water).
And thats what they found– Most people tried to do things according to the rules, but occasionally and briefly, tourists would screw up, either knowingly or unknowingly. Few/Tiny breaches add up when youre talking about 150,000 visitors a year. I wouldnt trade my Antarctica experience for anything, so I cant begrudge anyone else who wants to visit. So if you are going to Antarctica, try, try to follow the rules, and pressure your boat-mates to do the same… And make sure you blog about it for those of us who cant be there!