"First contact with these delightful and companionable creatures found them frolicking at their mid-summer feeding grounds among the ice floes in the Ross Sea. Being great swimmers they apparently fear nothing in the sea but must respect the leopard seal who pursues them. They may be seen far from land and even in open water free of all drift ice. Here, they are shown as our ship approached its rendezvous north of McMurdo Sound near 2000' Franklin Island. 13000' volcano Mt. Erebus on Ross Island was clearly visible 100 miles to the south at our destination." --Commander Standish Backus.