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Drake Passage which is also known as Mar de Hoces is a water body that is located between the southern end of South America which is situated at Cape Horn, Chile and Antarctica’s South Shetland Islands. Atlantic Ocean’s southwestern portion and Pacific Ocean’s southeastern side are interlinked by this passage and this further continues into the Southern Ocean. This route got its name in the 16th century from Sir Francis Drake who was an English privateer respectively. This was regardless of the fact that he had always preferred Strait of Magellan over the Drake Passage whose waters are steady as compared to that of the latter. The path was actually founded by a Spanish navigator, Francisco de Hoces in 1525.
For this reason, some Spanish, Mexican, Argentinean and Chilean historians and sources call it Mar de Hoces (Sea of Sickles) after Francisco de Hoces. The second recorded European voyage through the passage was that of the Eendracht, captained by Willem Schouten in 1616. (He named Cape Horn after his home town of Hoorn)
The 800 km (500 miles) wide passage between Cape Horn and Greenwich Island is the shortest crossing from Antarctica to the rest of the world's land.
This passage contains open waters, Diego Ramirez Islands, being an exception, are situated at the southern side of Cape Horn, approximately 50 km away from it. It’s very difficult to find land alongside the latitudes of the passage. This is important for the unobstructed flow of Antarctic’s Circumpolar current which carries water all the way through Drake’s Passage, circling Antarctica. The amount of water is almost as much as 600 times of that of Amazon River’s flow.
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