As the sun slowly set on the island of South Georgia and the ship sailed away, I stood next to the captain to savor every last moment that the magical island was visible above the tumultuous waves on the horizon. Just as I thought it was all over, one last sight - a large tabular iceberg broken from the Antarctic continent - presented itself in the distance. As we approached the sky fell towards darkness, but suddenly the sky illuminated with colors that I would not have believed had I not seen them with my own eyes. The iceberg (that even had a waterfall of turquoise meltwater pouring from its edge) seemed to act like a projector-screen to the atmospheric backdrop.
Though I have said it many times before, icebergs are tragic in their beauty. The increase in presence of large tabular icebergs like this one, which likely broke from an increasingly retreating ice sheet, represent an Antarctic system that is proving to be far less stable in the face of warming than was predicted just a few years ago.
I often struggle to come to terms with knowing firsthand the magic of things that we stand to lose as humans. As people say, knowledge brings great responsibility. It is precisely that responsibility that motivates me every time I pick up my camera.