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Daily Archives: 23. August 2014 − News & Stories


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.

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