Posts Tagged ‘boots’

Antartica Preparations Continue – Muck Boots and Custom Luggage

January 20th, 2010 at 3:04 pm (AST) by Jake Richter

The surprising and distressing news last week that we each needed to pack ourselves into two smaller bags of no more than 33 lbs. each instead of one 66 lb. bag for our flight from Santiago, Chile to Ushuaia, Argentina to connect with our boat, the Lindblad National Geographic Explorer, caused us quite a bit of consternation. We personally have tons of large luggage, but not enough mid-sized bags without wheels or other weight-increasing features to manage under these newly disclosed requirement. If we lived in a place with ample shopping options it would not have been a big deal, but here on Bonaire our luggage selection is severely limited – after all it’s an island with only 15,000 people on it, and not much shopping diversity of any sort. That was evident after stops in several local stores, none of which had anything remotely close to the sort of luggage we needed.

As a last resort we went to visit our friend, Marlis Seelos Schmid, who runs Marlis Sail & Canvas to see what she might have for us. We found a dive gear bag that was the right size, but of the wrong material (it was a mesh to let water drop out). As it happened, Marlis had just been to the Antarctic within the last couple of years and gave us great advice on what we would need. The end result is that we are having her make four custom bags made in the same dimensions as a dive gear bag, but with colorful umbrella cloth so we can spot the bags a mile away. Should be taking delivery of them today. They will be shown in a future post about our packing and staging efforts.

Speaking of colorful, one of the items we have been told in no uncertain terms that one of the most important pieces of gear we need to bring on our trip to the Antarctic are high, waterproof, warm boots, and that there are none better than Hi Arctic Sports boots from Muck Boots.

Hi Arctic Sport Muck Boots

Hi Arctic Sport Muck Boots

However, we realized that everyone on board the boat would have the same boots, and while my size 13s might stand out a bit, even that might not be enough to find our boots after they get hosed down upon our many returns from landings in the Zodiacs.

Fortunately, living on a scuba diving island, we have an advantage when it comes to marking aquatic sports gear. One of the local dive shops, Bruce Bowker’s Carib Inn carries special paints that folks can use to mark their fins. And, as it turns out, those paints work pretty darn well on Muck Boots as well.

Linda and the kids decorate our Muck Boots for our Antarctic trip

Linda and the kids decorate our Muck Boots for our Antarctic trip

So, without further ado, below are our now truly unique and identifiable Muck Boots for our Antarctic expedition.

Linda's Muck Boots feature frogs, as Linda is a major frog fan

Linda's Muck Boots feature frogs, as Linda is a major frog fan

Jake's Muck Boots - Yin Yang

Jake's Muck Boots - Yin Yang

Krystyana's Muck Boots feature elegant design

Krystyana's Muck Boots feature elegant design

Bas' Muck Boots are a cacophony of symbols of a video gaming youth

Bas' Muck Boots are a cacophony of symbols of a video gaming youth

And here are the special paints we used in case any of you are similarly inspired.

The special paints we used to decorate our Muck Boots

The special paints we used to decorate our Muck Boots