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This year’s winter season will not be long anymore, Langøysund is already sailing again, the good, old day trip boat that will take tourists to Barentsburg and Pyramiden from now on throughout the summer. Well, Pyramiden is not yet accessible by boat, there is is still ice in inner Billefjord – and that’s how it should be. Hopefully it lasts for another while.

We have to make use of that. Once again enjoying the view from upper Nordenskiöldbreen across inner Billefjord to Pyramiden … a long trip, if done in one day, but we can’t afford a night in Pyramiden now, time-wise.

The ice in Tempelfjord has broken up at Fredheim, there is only a narrow rim of ice attached to the shore where it is actually still possible to pass, but we decide to opt for a steep slope down from a mountain deeper in the fjord, where the ice is safer. Noorderlicht is still there in the ice and will probably stay there for another couple of weekd, but for how long will it be possible to visit her?

The trip through scenic Bünsow Land is always a highlight, especially in weather like today. And then we have got it, this view from Nordenskiöldbreen, where you stand 500 m above the fjord, under Urmstonfjellet, to enjoy the view described above.

If you have been to Pyramiden last year, then you will know the local guide Sascha. He is back again this year, a pleasant meeting. And same for an equally pleasant, but much more surprising meeting with a friend from the sailing boat Antigua. Ismail is here now with another boat, the Bør, which is alongside at the ice edge, not too far from Pyramiden so they could walk here. So snow mobile expeditionists and sailors meet in one and the same place.

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

There are even more remarkable meetings on this beautiful day. As we have a rest on the ice on our way back to Nordenskiöldbreen, a polar bear family is walking not too far from us. The arctic cannot be more beautiful than this. They walk past us, and as they have left, we start again and continue our long trip back to Longyearbyen. This was the last winter trip for us for this year. It won’t be long anymore and then we will continue under sail.

last modification: 2015-12-31 · copyright: Rolf Stange