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HomeArctic blog: Jan Mayen, Spitsbergen → Wind & Ice – 28th July 2015

Wind & Ice – 28th July 2015

It is as if someone had pushed a but­ton in the wea­ther sys­tem of the far north some days ago. After the calm weeks that we had until mid July, we have now got the second peri­od with strong winds in Spits­ber­gen. The first one wasn’t much of a bother to us, as we had spent some very enjoya­ble days in the shel­ter of inner Kongsfjord, as the rea­der may remem­ber. Right now, we have heard that a full-grown storm is raging around Sør­kapp (the south cape), and sai­ling boats wait in Lon­gye­ar­by­en for the wind to calm down befo­re they lea­ve.

Last night, the anchor was drag­ging in Murch­ison­fjord, Arc­ti­ca II was vigo­rous­ly pul­ling on the chain in the gusts. It was kind of ok until the mor­ning, but it was clear that this was no place to spend more time than neces­sa­ry. A bay that pro­vi­des shel­ter not only from the sea but also from the wind, that would be good now.

Pho­to Hin­lo­pen – 28th July 2015


Addi­tio­nal­ly, we have got the infor­ma­ti­on that the­re is move­ment in the ice off the eas­tern tip of Spits­ber­gen. So far, the pas­sa­ge from sou­thern Hin­lo­pen to Heley­sund had been blo­cked by den­se drift ice, but now it seems to be open. This pas­sa­ge is not very long, but curr­ent­ly the cru­cial bit with regards to a poten­ti­al cir­cum­na­vi­ga­ti­on of Spits­ber­gen. Now we are half-way through the voya­ge, time-wise. If we want to sail around Spits­ber­gen, then we have to keep an eye on time.

Pho­to Faks­eva­gen – 28th July 2015


Enough reasons altog­e­ther to lea­ve Murch­ison­fjord and set cour­se sou­thwards in Hin­lo­pen Strait, even if that invol­ves rough sea for a cou­ple of hours. But not for too long. It was nice to walk on solid tun­dra ground later in Lom­fjord.



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last modification: 2016-09-22 · copyright: Rolf Stange