spitzbergen-3
fb  Spitsbergen Panoramas - 360-degree panoramas  de  en  nb  Spitsbergen Shop  
Marker
Home → August, 2014

Monthly Archives: August 2014 − News & Stories


Arc­tic sea­son 2014: pho­tos, blog

The arc­tic sea­son 2014 ist not over yet, but a good num­ber of pho­to gal­le­ries are alrea­dy online, and so is my arc­tic blog, of cour­se. The recent trips in Spits­ber­gen with SV Anti­gua and SY Arc­ti­ca II have both been ama­zing. Both yiel­ded a wealth of impres­si­ons and memo­ries, some of them cap­tu­red with the came­ra, and you are wel­co­me to join the­se trips now online.

More sto­ries from the icy road in my arc­tic blog (click here).

Wit­hin a few weeks, I will add sli­de­shows of the indi­vi­du­al trips on the respec­ti­ve sites, and the­re is still one more trip to come in Sep­tem­ber.

Enjoy some vir­tu­al tra­vel­ling in the Arc­tic!

Arc­ti­ca II in August with a visi­tor.

Arctica II with polar bear

Hiorthfjel­let

My ori­gi­nal plan was to be lazy. Spen­ding the day with the news­pa­per, friends, and han­ging out in Frue­ne – the best Café in town. And pret­ty much the only one. No mat­ter how beau­ti­ful and exci­ting it is to sail around Lon­gye­ar­by­en, it is also qui­te ener­gy-deman­ding. Espe­cial­ly on such a small boat, without a col­league who could occa­sio­nal­ly take over. Well, no com­p­lains, but a day to relax sound­ed like a gre­at thing.

But the time of the mid­ni­ght sun ends in such a grand way that doing not­hing was sim­ply not an opti­on. To start with, the camp­si­te pan­ora­ma pro­ject was num­ber one on the to-do-list. Direct­ly fol­lo­wed by Hiorthfjel­let. The pro­blem with this moun­tain is that you need a boat to get the­re in sum­mer, some­thing that is not always at hand, but avail­ab­le today. Ano­t­her good rea­son to do that today. Get­ting up to the pla­teau on top, viewing across Advent­fjord to Lon­gye­ar­by­en. The other way around is an ever­y­day thing. 900 metres up over loo­se scree, yeeha! Two steps up, one down. But the view is worth every sin­gle step. You have Advent­fjord to your feet, from Advent­da­len in the east, Lon­gye­ar­by­en with the well-known moun­tains and gla­ciers around it, Pla­tå­berg and Hotell­ne­set with the air­port and camp­si­te and final­ly the wes­tern half of Isfjord.

And a good part of Nor­dens­kiöld Land is stret­ching far, far into most direc­tions. Count­less brown pla­teau-shaped moun­tains, rid­ges and peaks, small gla­ciers and val­leys. This is the part of Spits­ber­gen that I got to know first, at times when Edgeøya was a far dream, as easy to get to as the moon.

Visi­t­ing the old coal mine of Hior­th­hamn on the way back added a com­ple­te­ly dif­fe­rent, but com­pa­ra­b­ly inte­res­ting aspect to the excur­si­on. The mine is more than 600 metres high on a rather steep slo­pe. Not far from it, the­re was Ørne­redet, the eagle nest, whe­re 40-50 workers had accom­mo­da­ti­on, and they had to stay the­re during the polar night, as the steep slo­pe down was deemed too dan­ge­rous in the dark time. Darkness insi­de the moun­tain, darkness out­side.

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

Darkness is loo­m­ing just around the cor­ner here the­se days, too. Today will be the first sun­set this sum­mer. A day of four mon­ths is com­ing to an end.

Advent­fjord

Fri­day, 22nd August (still) – High­lights until the last minu­te. After it had been blowing qui­te a bit off the west coast, it was nice to be back in Isfjord whe­re the water was flat calm and the sun was shi­ning again. We met a wha­le brief­ly in Advent­fjord, just off the cam­ping site. And on the shore under Hiorthfjel­let, just oppo­si­te Lon­gye­ar­by­en, the­re was even ano­t­her polar bear wal­king around, would you belie­ve it? That doesn’t hap­pen every day. Hein­rich wasn’t too hap­py as he has got a hut in that area, one of the win­dows was dama­ged so the bear may have been insi­de and in that case, it might need more than just a litt­le bit of clea­ning to make it a cosy place again.

We finish the day and the trip with a nice last evening and a good meal on board. More than 1100 nau­ti­c­la miles around Spits­ber­gen are behind us now, with about 26 lan­dings in many pos­si­ble and some impos­si­ble pla­ces. Not to men­ti­on all the land­s­capes and the wild­life we have seen from the boat. The pho­tos will tell the sto­ry, soon the­re will be a gal­le­ry online tog­e­ther with the trip report.

e-a9m_Adventfjord_21Aug14_24

The­re is more to Spits­ber­gen than „just“ polar bears and wild land­s­capes, the­re are also good peop­le living here. See­ing some of them will be amongst my next tasks.

Green­peace-ship ‘Espe­r­an­za’ vio­la­ted new pilo­ta­ge regu­la­ti­ons on Spits­ber­gen

The Green­peace-ship ‘Espe­r­an­za’ which is cur­r­ent­ly sai­ling in the waters around Spits­ber­gen has repeated­ly vio­la­ted the new pilo­ta­ge regu­la­ti­ons, being step-by-step estab­lis­hed sin­ce July 2012.

The ‘Espe­r­an­za’ is pre­sent around Spits­ber­gen this sum­mer to call atten­ti­on to the impact of cli­ma­te chan­ge to the arc­tic and to pro­test against the expan­si­on of oil explo­ra­ti­on to the Bar­ents Sea. As a pro­mi­nent sup­por­ter for this cam­pai­gn amongst others the Bri­tish actress Emma Thomp­son was aboard.

In the end of July it was noti­ced that the ship vio­la­ted the new pilo­ta­ge regu­la­ti­ons on Spits­ber­gen for several times. For a round-trip which was accom­pa­nied by the actress Emma Thomp­son the­re­fo­re a pilot was taken aboard. In the Midd­le of August the cap­tain of the ‘Espe­r­an­za’ then again acted against the regu­la­ti­ons as he led the ship towards Lon­gye­ar­by­en without a pilot. As befo­re, the inci­dent was repor­ted to the Sys­sel­man­nen and this time the cap­tain had to pay a fine of 50.000 Kro­ner.

The Sys­sel­man­nen and the Nor­we­gi­an Kyst­verk reg­ret that it was just Green­peace who vio­la­ted a regu­la­ti­on which actual­ly is sup­por­ted by the orga­niz­a­ti­on. In the same spi­rit Green­peace expres­sed their reg­ret. Green­peace appre­cia­tes the estab­lish­ment of pilo­ta­ge regu­la­ti­ons on Spits­ber­gen and, envi­ron­men­tal pro­tec­tion in mind, gene­ral­ly sup­ports regu­la­ti­ons that con­tri­bu­te to safe­ty in the mari­ti­me traf­fic. In the inci­dents in the end of July Green­peace was not awa­re of the fact that their ship was alrea­dy affec­ted by the new regu­la­ti­ons, espe­cial­ly as they had an own ice-navi­ga­tor aboard sup­por­ting the cap­tain. In the recent inci­dent in August the cap­tain had, as he said, wai­ted 1.5 hours for the pilot who was delay­ed. After that he deci­ded to sail towards Lon­gye­ar­by­en without a pilot.

Com­pul­so­ry pilo­ta­ge gets step-by-step estab­lis­hed on Spits­ber­gen sin­ce the 1st of July 2012 (see also Spitsbergen-Svalbard.com news from July 2012). Cur­r­ent­ly, for the sea­son 2014, it affects ves­sels with a length of 70 meters or more and pas­sen­ger ves­sels with a length of 24 meters or more, except expe­di­ti­on crui­se ves­sels. In the sea­son 2015 the­re will no lon­ger be such excep­ti­ons and the regu­la­ti­ons will be the same as on the Nor­we­gi­an main­land.

The ‘Espe­r­an­za’,
cur­r­ent­ly sai­ling in the waters around Spits­ber­gen.
 
Copy­right:
Glen via Flickr,
CC BY 2.0

Esperanza

Source: Sval­bard­pos­ten, Kyst­ver­ket

Gui­de breaks leg on Sar­ko­fa­gen

Not just in win­ter the gla­ciers and moun­tains sur­roun­ding Lon­gye­ar­by­en (some known for their crev­as­ses) pose dan­ger. Also in sum­mer it is very important to pay clo­se atten­ti­on; for examp­le, to the part­ly steep and rocky sub­sur­face tun­neled by melt water.

Just recent­ly when descen­ting (from) the Sar­ko­fa­gen (which is situa­ted at the west­side of the Lars­breen/Lars-Gla­cier), a 21 year old nor­we­gi­an gui­de bro­ke her leg. Becau­se the­re was no cell­p­ho­ne ser­vice avail­ab­le at the site of the acci­dent, mem­bers of the group had to hike back up the moun­tain to call for help by informing the Sys­sel­man. The hurt tour gui­de and her ent­i­re group of tou­rist from various nati­ons were then flown out to Lon­gye­ar­by­en, whe­re she got a cast at the local hos­pi­tal and was later trans­por­ted to Trom­sø.

Sakro­fa­gen (on the left hand side) view from Lars-Gla­cier

Larsbreen-mit-Sakrofagen

Source: Sval­bard­pos­ten

Again explo­si­ves have been found

As last year explo­si­ves of he Word War II have been found arround Lon­gye­ar­by­en this time on the moun­tain Pla­tå­ber­get. Due to the fin­ding traf­fic in the area is ban­ned. The gre­na­de could been deac­ti­va­ted.

Pla­tåf­jel­let

Platafjellet

Source: Sys­sel­mann

Eidem­buk­ta

Last night we sai­led down For­landsund, hea­ding for Prins Karls For­land, but the wind was so strong that the anchor didn’t real­ly hold, so we deci­ded to go for Eidem­buk­ta ins­tead, hoping for bet­ter shel­ter the­re. Which worked well. After all the­se miles and mane­ouvres, I went to sleep after 5 am. It may have to do with that if I am a bit tired now. Almost a bit sad, or melan­cho­lic. West Coast Blues. The trip is com­ing to an end, the­re is no way around it. Ever­y­bo­dy has grown into a tight group now, knowing each other, the rou­ti­nes are all working well, we could so easi­ly con­ti­nue for ano­t­her week or two. But zivi­li­sa­ti­on is not far any­mo­re. Dates, flights, busi­ness, fami­ly … are all deman­ding their rights.

But we are not the­re yet. First, we spend a pre­cious cou­p­le of hours on the west coast tun­dra again. After all the ice and cold of the far north, the rocky land­s­capes of the nor­thwest and the migh­ty gla­ciers of Krossfjord, you might almost feel at home here. This land­s­cape is not so har­sh, not so inhos­pi­ta­ble, almost invi­t­ing. Well, in com­pa­ri­son.

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

I have been in Eidem­buk­ta just a few weeks ago, in ear­ly June. It feels like ages ago! Back then, we had snow down to sea level. Almost the who­le, wide-open coas­tal tun­dra plain was white, whe­re autumn colours are stret­ching now bet­ween the sea and the moun­tains and gla­ciers. No trace of snow any­mo­re today. Back then, almost every snow-free tun­dra patch was occu­p­ied by geese, now the­re is just a group of fema­le com­mon eiders paddling in the bay, the stress of the bree­ding sea­son is alrea­dy histo­ry for them. The world has chan­ged incredi­b­ly quick­ly, wit­hin less than 7 weeks! The arc­tic sum­mer is com­ing and going so quick­ly.

Krossfjord

I don’t mind repea­ting this again: A day taken direct­ly from an arc­tic fai­ry tale. The sun remai­ned with us, and with this kind of wea­ther, Krossfjord is unbea­t­a­b­ly beau­ti­ful. Blue­green water, migh­ty gla­ciers, dark, wild moun­tains, green slo­pes. I know, I have alrea­dy writ­ten simi­lar sen­ten­ces simi­lar else­whe­re. I can’t help it, I am sim­ply not a gre­at wri­ter, I have never pre­ten­ded anything dif­fe­rent. But natu­re can ever­ything up here, and it’s that what counts.

The gla­cier hike today has best chan­ces to be very high on the list of the grea­test hikes this sum­mer. The pho­tos will tell it all, I hope, as soon as they are online in a cou­p­le of days from now.

To add icing on the cake, we were wel­co­med with a BBQ on the beach. How good can life be!

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

We could hap­pi­ly have cal­led it a gre­at day, but the­re is always some­thing exci­ting going on here as long as you can keep your eyes open. Ano­t­her fjord ano­t­her gla­cier, ano­t­her world. Per­fect mir­ror images on the water. A polar bear on the shore, with the sun from behind, sur­roun­ded by pie­ces of gla­cier ice shi­ning like dia­monds. An arc­tic won­der­land.

Dans­køya & The Seven Ice­bergs

A day taken direct­ly from an arc­tic fai­ry tale. Well, it was about time to get to see the sun again, and we got a lot of it today. Who would then mind the end­less rocks over which we stumb­led while hiking across Dans­køya, when you can enjoy this ama­zing view over the moun­tains and gla­ciers of nor­thwes­tern Spits­ber­gen at the same time? The dra­ma sto­ries from past times from Dans­køya can’t dimi­nish our plea­su­re, they just add some fla­vour.

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

Almost hard to grasp on such a day that the wha­lers had such a respect for that wild coast which the cal­led „The Seven Ice­bergs“, refer­ring to seven lar­ge gla­ciers, of cour­se. The coast is still just as wild, but the wea­ther is sim­ply lovely today and it seems to be a pure plea­su­re place, an arc­tic Rivie­ra. Ama­zing colours, dark green slo­pes near bird cliffs bet­ween shi­ning white gla­ciers with blue crev­as­ses, and all this under a blue sky. Pure plea­su­re, without any hardships. Extre­me­ly enjoya­ble.

Raudfjord

Time for some exer­cise, which we got while hiking a good 10 kilo­me­tres along lagoons and a big lake in a silent val­ley. Later, the world disap­peared lar­ge­ly behind a grey curtain, which wasn’t too bad, some rest was nee­ded by most on board. Having been on watch last night may have play­ed a role here.

Nevertheless, sit­ting out­side on deck around the BBQ, spot­ting a polar bear fami­ly in the fog … again, one of the­se days!

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

The high north

Actual­ly I thought I shouldn’t wri­te anything. The pic­tures tell the sto­ry, don’t they?

But I can’t real­ly keep my fin­gers off it. This lovely litt­le bay at North Cape (not the one you are thin­king of) was com­ple­te­ly unknown and unchar­ted. It was a mas­ter­pie­ce of navi­ga­ti­on by Hein­rich to take the Arc­ti­ca II in the­re, fin­ding a safe ancho­ra­ge for the night. And it was even more of a mas­ter­pie­ce to get her (and us) out of the­re again next morning, after the ice had sett­led down in the ent­ran­ce.

Who would have thought 2 weeks ago that we would make it to Sjuøya­ne, the fur­thest north up here in the far north? The arc­tic, here at least, is real­ly arc­tic this year, with a lot of ice. Out of reach. This is how it should be. But our cal­cu­la­ti­on, to start the trip going south, get­ting later to the north to give the ice more time to loo­sen up a bit, was qui­te right. Per­fect timing! It was just the right day for a dash up to Sjuøya­ne, which pre­sen­ted them­sel­ves real­ly the arc­tic way, with snow and ice-cold wind. The last win­ter hasn’t real­ly left, the next one is alrea­dy well on its way. A place for­got­ten by the sum­mer.

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

A free ice cream who can tell me whe­re Nord­lysøya­ne are without a look at the map (the ice cream is to be picked up on Nord­lysøya­ne, just in case). I can tell you that the­re is a rather curious sub-adult polar bear the­re.

Nor­thwes­tern Nord­aus­t­land

Ama­zing what kind of ide­as you can have while wal­king around bet­ween the old buil­dings in Kinn­vi­ka in den­se fog: I have to have auto­mats with my books at popu­lar lan­ding sites in Spits­ber­gen! If they don’t want to sell them on the ships here – some of the com­pa­nies even pre­tend their guests don’t read. What do they think of their cli­ents?! – then I have to meet them some­whe­re else. So I need auto­ma­ted sel­ling points with auto­ma­tic refill. I could see mys­elf being con­tent with one each at Grav­ne­set in Mag­da­le­n­efjord and in the har­bours of Lon­gye­ar­by­en and Ny Åle­sund.

That’s the kind of thoughts that can cross your mind when you are wal­king around in fog. Cra­zy, of cour­se, but fun­ny.

We couldn’t see much of the low shore­li­nes around Lady Fran­klin­sund eit­her. A bit of a shame, as you don’t get the­re too often. It is very shal­low and com­ple­te­ly unchar­ted. Hein­rich is one of the few skip­pers who are taking their small boats through the­re.

All this doesn’t bother you if you are a wal­rus. Then, almost not­hing will bother you. This beca­me pret­ty clear with this migh­ty fel­low on an ice floe in Lady Fran­klin­fjord.

The names are inte­res­ting: Bren­ne­v­insfjord, trans­la­tes as boo­ze bay or some­thing simi­lar. I guess that cen­tu­ries ago some wha­lers had a wild par­ty the­re, but nobo­dy knows for sure. Bar­ren rocks, a wild, rough coun­try. Not the friend­ly tun­dra of the west coast, whe­re it is lovely to hike for hours, whe­re you have the fee­ling to be in a living coun­try. Here, you are a guest for a short while, no more. If you stay too long, like Schrö­der-Stranz in 1912, the land may take you. Who knows. But any­way, we dare to go ashore in Boo­ze bay for a few hours.

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

You usual­ly don’t see tabu­lar ice­bergs in the Arc­tic. They just don’t do them here. Only in Ant­arc­ti­ca, the­re they are very com­mon. Nevertheless, we saw one today, not the big­gest one, but nice. Pro­bab­ly from the Rus­si­an Arc­tic, the­re are a few ice shel­ves the­re. As a con­se­quence: Rus­sia is Spitsbergen’s Ant­arc­ti­ca.

Sou­thwes­tern Nord­aus­t­land

(Thurs­day and Fri­day, 14th and 15th August 2014) – How often do we see gla­ciers from the boat or from the tun­dra? Every day. How often do we view down from gla­ciers to fjord and coast? Exact­ly.

This trip was meant to be an oppor­tu­ni­ty to do things that you don’t nor­mal­ly do on ship-based trips here. Even more so than other­wi­se on the trips that I do. One of the things that you would not nor­mal­ly get to do on a Spits­ber­gen crui­se is a gla­cier hike. The­re is this nice litt­le gla­cier in Augus­t­abuk­ta, they cal­led it Marie­breen in 1868. It is actual­ly part of the ice cap Vega­fon­na, which again is con­nec­ted to Aus­t­fon­na, more than 8400 squa­re kilo­me­tres lar­ge and Europe’s lar­gest ice cap. Dive into this weird icy world of gla­ciers for a few hours. Mean­de­ring meltwa­ter rivers with blue water, shi­ning white ice under a hea­vy grey sky that is mer­ging seem­less­ly into the ice cap on the hori­zon. A step out of the world of lea­ving things. The­re is not­hing ali­ve here. Ice and water, some stones, that’s it.

Cros­sing some­thing has always some­thing fasci­na­ting about it. It does not have to be an inland ice of con­ti­nen­tal sca­le. A pen­in­su­la can be enough. You are drop­ped off and you see your boat sai­ling away. That makes you feel a bit like Nan­sen, who was drop­ped off at the East Green­land coast in 1888. His choice was simp­le: reach the west coast of die. The rest is histo­ry.

Of cour­se, it isn’t qui­te like that in the 21st cen­tu­ry any­mo­re. In case of any unex­pec­ted real dif­fi­cul­ties, you grab the radio or the sat pho­ne and ask the boat to return. But still, it is an exci­ting thing.

21 kilo­me­tres of tun­dra and polar desert, rid­ges of basalt rocks and fos­sils older than the hills, frost pat­ter­ned ground and meltwa­ter rivers. A day long enough to real­ly get lost in this ama­zing coun­try, mental­ly, I mean. Lis­tening to the water run­ning in rivers and to the wind (the­re was more than enough of the lat­ter, to be honest. It was free­zing old at times.

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

At the end of the hike, on the shore of Palan­der­buk­ta, the­re was an old trap­per hut, whe­re the wind was blowing through holes that were doors and win­dows many years ago. Weird sto­ry. The two trap­pers who built the hut pro­bab­ly mana­ged to blow them­sel­ves up in Janu­a­ry 1934. One of them was hit while he was in for serious busi­ness in the out­house. Not a nice place to die. He was found the­re mon­ths later, still sit­ting, fro­zen solid. Weird sto­ry. They never found out in details what had real­ly hap­pen­ed.

But for us, the day had a very hap­py end when we came back to the boat and sal­mon was almost rea­dy 🙂

Bar­entsøya

The sou­the­as­tern islands are real­ly polar bear coun­try. Bears ever­y­whe­re, it can be dif­fi­cult to find a place whe­re you can go for a walk. In Free­man­sund, ever­ything is occu­p­ied by the­se crea­my-white polar sheep. And of cour­se, you might ask, why. The ques­ti­on „what are they doing here? The­re isn’t anything they can eat?“ is one that I hear about 100 times every day. One easy, but nevertheless true, ans­wer is becau­se it is their home, after all. They are living here. They want to be here. They could go some­whe­re else, if they wan­ted to, inclu­ding the pack ice in the north. They would be the­re wit­hin a few days, but they stay here.

But of cour­se it remains a valid ques­ti­on what they find to eat. Some bears here are qui­te fat, the blub­ber has to come from some­whe­re.

I’d qui­te like to find out, so I have deve­lo­ped a habit that might help me to learn more about it: I have star­ted to take pic­tures of polar bear shit. Every time I find some drop­pings on the tun­dra, I grab the came­ra and press the but­ton. Unli­kely that this collec­tion turns into a pho­to book some day. You may find it stran­ge that I walk around here pho­to­gra­phing shit. As you wish, I don’t care. I find it inte­res­ting. You just have to take a clo­se look. This morning, I found smas­hed rein­de­er bones in one pile of shit. Teeth in ano­t­her, also rein­de­er. Many times, I see fea­thers, and vege­ta­ti­on remains are very com­mon. Here you are, that’s an ans­wer get­ting shape, isn’t it? So I am more than hap­py to keep going with this shit pho­to­gra­phy busi­ness, whenever the oppor­tu­ni­ty ari­ses.

Chan­ge of sub­ject (anyo­ne still with me?). Today has been the col­dest day of the sum­mer up here so far, just 2 or 3 degrees. Qui­te cold, when you inclu­de the fresh eas­ter­ly bree­ze. Whe­re is the sum­mer? The flowers loo­se their colours, the lea­ves of the polar wil­low chan­ge their colours on lar­ge are­as now.

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

The tun­dra over which we are wal­king is a real wha­le ceme­ta­ry. Several thousands of years ago, when this used to be the coast, dozens of wha­le car­cas­ses must have drifted ashore here.

Ryke Yse­øya­ne

Some pla­ces have got fasci­na­ting names, they keep just sound­ing in my mind, vibra­ting, genera­ting a drawing power almost like a magnet. May­be it hel­ps to spend evenings with maps ins­tead of books some­ti­mes, to get a per­spec­ti­ve on the remo­teness of some of the­se pla­ces. Or to hike around in Spits­ber­gen. It takes four days on foot from Lon­gye­ar­by­en to the east coast. So that is the end of the world. From this end of the world, you can see Edgeøya on the hori­zon. Sit­ting the­re, on a morai­ne hill on the east coast, with tired legs, loo­king across Storfjord to Edgeøya, makes you dream of get­ting the­re one day. You know it will pro­bab­ly never be in reach, but who knows. Then, it means some­thing dif­fe­rent to you, it is some­thing very spe­cial to get the­re one day, com­pa­red to just being the­re sud­den­ly, ano­t­her place on a crui­se whe­re you are sud­den­ly to go and see some ani­mals, without ever having heard the name of the place befo­re, without remem­be­ring it bey­ond the evening of the same day. Any­way … I am drif­ting away. So, ima­gi­ne the east coast is the end of your world at some sta­ge, and from the­re, you can see Edgeøya. And you know, the­re are still some small, very lonely islands behind it. Ryke Yse­øya­ne, the Ryke Yse Islands.

In short words, they are far away from ever­ything.

Dark, bleak basalt islands, rough and wild. And as men­tio­ned, this name: Ryke Yse! Nobo­dy could think of a name like that. Ryke Yse was pro­bab­ly a Dut­ch wha­ling cap­tain, 17th cen­tu­ry. Thank God his name was not, say, Fred Cle­ver. I don’t think I would be inte­res­ted in going to the Fred Cle­ver Islands. But so … wild place. Only two dar­ed to win­ter the­re. Only one sur­vi­ved. A rough land­s­cape. Edgy doleri­te rock, fal­ling apart into sharp blocks, cove­r­ed with lichens, steep cliffs, a home for Black guil­lemots.

And we even made it on 2 out of the­se 3 litt­le islands!

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

Time to get on, then. Many kilo­me­tres of gla­cier front on our port side during the later after­noon. A wall of marb­le, all shades of blue and grey you can think of, sea, ice, sky. Hard to belie­ve this is the same island that has such a colour­ful, friend­ly tun­dra on the other side. But well, it is bey­ond the end of the world. What do you expect.

Back

News-Listing live generated at 2021/September/20 at 17:22:15 Uhr (GMT+1)
css.php