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HomeArctic blog: Jan Mayen, Spitsbergen → Ice – Murch­ison­fjord

Ice – Murch­ison­fjord

After the colourful tun­dra in nor­thwes­tern Spits­ber­gen, the drift ice in the nor­the­ast is a com­ple­te­ly dif­fe­rent world. Hard and tough, you feel cle­ar­ly, that we are not made for this world, we wouldn’t last too long here wit­hout warm clo­thes and some other useful things. A good ship and a hot cup of tea cer­tain­ly make life bet­ter here. Cold and win­dy, waves are brea­king over the blue edges of ice floes. The wind is pushing the ice tog­e­ther to form a com­pact, end­less field of pack ice with a shar­ply defi­ned edge.

For the wild­life, it is the place to be. Lively Harp seals are swim­ming near the ice edge. Two wal­rus­ses are res­t­ing on an ice floe. A migh­ty bull, the ends of his huge tusks are almost tou­ch­ing each other, and his youn­ger fri­end.

We lea­ve this fasci­na­ting, but quite hosti­le world of the ice. A few hours later, we have ente­red yet ano­ther, again com­ple­te­ly dif­fe­rent, fasci­na­ting world: the polar desert of Nord­aus­t­land. Bar­ren polar land in the deepest cor­ners of Murch­ison­fjord. Colourful stones, colours from the days befo­re the­re was life on land.

Click on thumb­nail to open an enlar­ged ver­si­on of the spe­ci­fic pho­to.

And then, a fema­le polar bear on a litt­le island, hol­ding a sies­ta on a snow field. Remains of a seal not far away on the shore. She is res­t­ing in the most beau­tiful light of the mid­night sun, wat­ching us occa­sio­nal­ly with a slight­ly tired view, yaw­ning, eating some snow. Making 28 polar tra­vel­lers and some gui­des and crew very hap­py.

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last modification: 2014-07-26 · copyright: Rolf Stange
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