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Monthly Archives: June 2017 − News & Stories

Sør­kapp Land – 30th June 2017

Spitsbergen’s south cape is always good for trou­ble. Even nicer to round it in calm con­di­ti­ons, against expec­ta­ti­ons. And to find the sea so calm next morning that it brings the rare oppor­tu­ni­ty to land at the south cape! A few miles east of the actu­al sou­thern­most point, Anti­gua is able to get clo­se enough to go ashore. It is still more than far enough from the shore. But a gre­at land­s­cape, high arc­tic tun­dra, with a rug­ged moun­tain in the back­ground. A rocky shore­li­ne with inte­res­ting struc­tures, old whalebo­nes … ever­ything. And it is a rare­ly seen land­s­cape. How often is someo­ne get­ting here?

Gal­le­ry – Sør­kapp Land – 30th June 2017

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

The wea­ther gets even more beau­ti­ful in the after­noon. We are bles­sed to see Isbuk­ta in its full sce­nic sple­ndor, under a bright sun and a blue sky. Unf­or­gett­ab­ly beau­ti­ful!

Horn­sund – 29th June 2017

We reach Hyt­tevi­ka north of Horn­sund after bre­ak­fast. A won­der­ful pie­ce of Spits­ber­gen! Very idyl­lic. Wan­ny Wold­sta­ds lovely hut, green tun­dra, rein­de­er, litt­le auks in gre­at num­bers, a rocky shore­li­ne with small hid­den beaches.

Later, we sail into Horn­sund – and I mean, we SAIL into Horn­sund. Beau­ti­ful. Ano­t­her stun­ning part of Spits­ber­gen, which pres­ents its­elf to us lar­ge­ly under a blue sky and with bright sunshi­ne.

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

Wahlen­berg­breen & Erd­mann­flya – 28th June 2017

We stay in Isfjord for the first day, in Yol­dia­buk­ta, to be more pre­cise. The gla­cier the­re, Wahlen­berg­breen, has made a strong advan­ce in the recent past, a so-cal­led sur­ge. And it turns out that Yol­dia­buk­ta is not com­ple­te­ly ice-fil­led this time, as it usual­ly is. So we are able to anchor not too far from the gla­cier for a while. Actual­ly, the ancho­ring posi­ti­on that we were initi­al­ly aiming for is now under the advan­cing gla­cier!

Gal­le­ry – 22nd Wahlen­bergfjord & Erd­mann­flya – 28th June 2017

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

It tur­ned out that the gla­cier is easy to reach. The ice is com­ple­te­ly bro­ken and hea­vi­ly crev­as­sed. Very impres­si­ve!

In the after­noon, we make some first impres­si­ons in the tun­dra in Borebuk­ta, on Erd­mann­flya.

Isfjord – 27th June 2017

We are sai­ling! 18 days Spits­ber­gen with SV Anti­gua. The­re is still a lot of ice on the north coast, so we will pro­bab­ly not sail around Spits­ber­gen. But that does not mat­ter. See what hap­pens in a week or so, we have got ple­nty of time.

Gal­le­ry – Isfjord – 27th June 2017

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

So now we are sai­ling! We left Lon­gye­ar­by­en in the after­noon. And it was not long until we saw four Fin wha­les and even a Blue wha­le! Talk about being in the right place at the right time.

Less mer­cu­ry in polar bears – due to cli­ma­te chan­ge?

If sea ice is gra­du­al­ly with­drawing as a result of cli­ma­te chan­ge, the level of mer­cu­ry in polar bears could decre­a­se.

Healt­hi­er food on land thand on ice: Polar bear

Healthier food on land thand on ice: Polar bear

In an US-Ame­ri­can stu­dy, hair sam­ples of polar bears were inves­ti­ga­ted in the Beau­fort Sea north of Alas­ka from 2004 to 2011. The result: In male ani­mals, the levels of mer­cu­ry decli­ned by about 13% per year, but not in fema­les. This is pro­bab­ly due to dif­fe­rent fora­ging habits of the sexes. Fema­le polar bears cha­se main­ly rin­ged seals from the ice, which in turn feed on mer­cu­ry-con­ta­mi­na­ted fish. Male polar bears also feed from land on bear­ded seals and stran­ded bowhead wha­les, which are only slight­ly con­ta­mi­na­ted with mer­cu­ry.

If the ice in the polar regi­ons is now more and more decli­ning due to cli­ma­te chan­ge, polar bears could incre­a­singly shift their fora­ging habits to prey which can be found on land, e.g. stran­ded bowhead wha­les.

Accord­ing to the stu­dy, the lower con­cen­tra­ti­on of mer­cu­ry in the polar bears is not a con­se­quence of a redu­ced mer­cu­ry con­cen­tra­ti­on in the envi­ron­ment.

Source: ACS Publi­ca­ti­ons

Jan May­en – Kval­ross­buk­ta – 20th June 2017

Clouds have been han­ging low most of the time around Kval­ross­buk­ta recent­ly. It is clea­ring up a bit towards the after­noon, and the moun­tain Kval­ros­sen is invi­t­ing for a litt­le hike. The lar­ge coas­tal stack Bri­el­le­tår­net is sup­po­sed to be simi­lar to a tower in the Dut­ch town of Bri­el­le. I am not sure about that, but I know that Bri­el­le­tår­net is a stun­ning land­s­cape gad­get on the outer side of Kval­ros­sen. We climb and play around the­re for a while. I also do not want to miss the oppor­tu­ni­ty for a climb up Kval­ros­sen its­elf, with nice views and the chan­ce to see puf­fins and ful­mars on their nests.

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

Time has been fly­ing. We have to think about depar­tu­re tomor­row. This last day on the island is nice­ly roun­ded off in good atmo­s­phe­re with a bon­fire on the beach.

Evacua­ti­on in Lon­gye­ar­by­en ended after four mon­ths

In mid-Febru­a­ry, an avalan­che from the moun­tain Suk­ker­top­pen hit houses in Lon­gye­ar­by­en and des­troy­ed two buil­dings. 92 house­holds were evacua­ted. The last inha­bi­tants in way 226 could now return to their houses on the wee­kend.

Whe­ther and for how long they can stay in their homes is still com­ple­te­ly unclear. Exten­si­ve secu­ri­ty mea­su­res are plan­ned to pro­tect the houses from avalan­ches. Howe­ver, several houses in the avalan­che area may have to be demo­lis­hed. Pro­bab­ly the resi­dents in way 226 can only use their houses during the sum­mer.

Place whe­re the avalan­che acci­dent occu­red

Lawinenunglück 21.02.2017

Source: Sval­bard­pos­ten

Jan May­en – Elds­te Met­ten – Schmelck­da­len – 19th June 2017

I spend a day watching the camp to make sure no tent is fly­ing away as the wea­ther has chan­ged a bit. This is not qui­te unne­cessa­ry, as it turns out. The­re is a chan­ce for a litt­le walk in Kval­ross­buk­ta while wind and rain are taking a break. Mean­while, the others make a visit to the sta­ti­on, whe­re they get a very friend­ly wel­co­me.

On the next day, the Bee­ren­berg-clim­bers start their long trip. Mat­thi­as, Wolf­gang and Magnus will mana­ge to climb up and back down again wit­hin 18 hours. Congra­tu­la­ti­ons! Well done! Inclu­ding the three of them, a good 60 peop­le have come over the years with SY Auro­ra to Jan May­en and clim­bed Bee­ren­berg. Sin­ce 2010 (new laws with a ban on lan­ding and cam­ping near Bee­ren­berg), three groups have mana­ged to reach the top, the first of them in 2015. Addi­tio­nal­ly, the­re are more or less annu­al ascents by mem­bers of the Nor­we­gi­an sta­ti­on.

Mean­while, skip­per Vidar, who took care of the boat during the win­dy wea­ther yes­ter­day, and I have a chan­ce to say hel­lo on the sta­ti­on and to make some short, but fine walks, befo­re I ven­ture on a second, lon­ger trip. This time, I want to explo­re the area around Elds­te Met­ten, near Bee­ren­berg, but on the south side of Jan May­en (the shape and ori­en­ta­ti­on of the island can make the­se terms a bit con­fu­sing).

While the north side of Mid Jan and the area around the nort­hern lagoon, just a few kilo­me­tres away from this area here, around Eggøya and Elds­te Met­ten, are hills and plains green of mos­ses and lichens, here it is very bar­ren. A lava desert, sand and rocks, like the high inte­riour of Ice­land. Almost not­hing is gro­wing here. The soil has fasci­na­ting, rough­ly cir­cu­lar, struc­tures and bizar­re sink­ho­les. The lat­ter are slight­ly spoo­ky, just deep holes that can open any­whe­re here, pro­bab­ly abo­ve col­lap­sing lava caves.

I want to have a look at the rug­ged coast­li­ne, whe­re this bizar­re land­s­cape meets the sea. The hea­vy surf has crea­ted a wild coast­li­ne with many litt­le bays and capes, caves and rocks. Guil­lemots and puf­fins are bree­ding in many pla­ces on small cliffs, and some glau­cous gulls have their homes on small ele­va­tions.

Only some scat­te­red remains are left of „Elds­te Met­ten“, the first wea­ther sta­ti­on on Jan May­en. The Nor­we­gi­ans had inde­ed cho­sen a hos­ti­le place! At least, they could get radio con­ta­ct with Nor­way from the­re, and that was important. I take some time to look around. Wind and sand have car­ved fasci­na­ting sur­faces and struc­tures in glass and wood over almost a cen­tu­ry.

South of Elds­te Met­ten, the­re is Jame­son­buk­ta, a wide, black sand beach, whe­re the surf is always going high. On the way the­re, I hap­pen to find a litt­le memo­ri­al on a rock for the wha­ling cap­tains Wil­liam Scores­by, seni­or and juni­or. They did not only hunt wha­les, but they made a lot of sci­en­ti­fic obser­va­tions and dis­co­very during their jour­ney in the first half of the 19th cen­tu­ry. When he was on Jan May­en, Scores­by juni­or found out that Eggøya was an island, hence the name („egg island“). Today, Eggøya is firm­ly con­nec­ted to the rest of Jan May­en.

The­re are still ruins of one or two loo­kout posts from the war on Eggøya, and soon, the­re is also a lot of wind. I eat qui­te a bit of dust while I make my way across the san­dy plain from Eggøya to Bee­ren­berg, get­ting away from that expo­sed and inhos­pi­ta­ble area befo­re the wind is get­ting even stron­ger.

My next desti­na­ti­on is Schmelck­da­len on the foot of Bee­ren­berg. Schmelck­da­len is actual­ly not a val­ley, but a lava flow that soli­di­fied when it reached the lowest slo­pes. It comes out of a val­ley hig­her up, but that is hard to see now in the clouds. The­re are some lava caves sup­po­sed to be in that area, and I am qui­te curious about them. Lava caves are remains of lava flows whe­re the outer lay­er coo­led down and beca­me solid, while the inner part kept moving. If it all flew out, then a cave was the result. They can come in all shapes and sizes.

The­re are several of them in Schmelck­da­len. Some are very small, you have to bend down and watch out for rocks both around your head and your feet. Others are lar­ge enough to stand in them or even big­ger. The­re are fasci­na­ting struc­tures left by the flowing move­ment of the liquid lava ever­y­whe­re!

It is not easy to pho­to­graph this ali­en world pro­per­ly. Wind and fog do not make i easie eit­her. On top of it all comes the bizar­re fee­ling to be insi­de Bee­ren­berg! But this is not a place whe­re I would want to spend more time then necessa­ry. Ear­th­qua­kes are rare, but they may occur. The last stron­ger on was this spring. An ear­th­qua­ke would not be a gre­at thing while you are in a lava cave, or in any other cave, for that sake. It is a fasci­na­ting place, but I do not intend to beco­me a cave­man.

The fog is com­ing down to sea level now in the midd­le part of the island (Mid Jan), and this does not make the long way back to Kval­ross­buk­ta more inte­res­ting. The long and boring road. It may be about 12-13 km from Schmelck­da­len to Kval­ross­buk­ta. My feet love it! It will take them a cou­p­le of years to get rid of some smal­ler sou­ve­nirs from all the­se hikes. But the impres­si­ons and memo­ries will last much, much lon­ger, and they are worth every sin­gle step!

Gal­le­ry – Jan May­en – Elds­te Met­ten – Schmelck­da­len – 19th June 2017

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

Jan May­en – Nord­la­gu­ne – 16th June 2017

Ever­y­bo­dy wants to go out to explo­re the next day. The first hike takes us to the north, along the „road“ to the nort­hern lagoon. The­re is a num­ber of inte­res­ting pla­ces in that area. Ever­y­bo­dy is, to some degree, fol­lowing his own pace and inte­rest. The­re have not been any polar bears on Jan May­en for more than 25 years, so we can take a slight­ly more libe­ral approach than in high-arc­tic Spits­ber­gen.

One of the first pla­ces on my list is Maria Musch­buk­ta. This is whe­re the Aus­tri­ans built the­re sta­ti­on in 1882 for the First Inter­na­tio­nal Polar Year, this gre­at idea of Karl Weyprecht, who did not live long enough to see it being rea­li­zed, unfor­tu­n­a­te­ly. Other­wi­se he would cer­tain­ly have been the lea­der of the Aus­tri­an sta­ti­on here. Nevertheless, they lived and worked altog­e­ther well here, the Aus­tri­ans. One sailor from the ship died from tuber­cu­lo­sis during unloading, his gra­ve is on a slo­pe behind the sta­ti­on. Ever­y­bo­dy else retur­ned home in good health the fol­lowing year.

The­re is, unfor­tu­n­a­te­ly, not much left to be seen from the sta­ti­on. The buil­ding mate­ri­als have been used free­ly else­whe­re during the 20th cen­tu­ry. But you can still see whe­re it was, espe­cial­ly if you know the old pho­tos.

In con­trast to ear­lier visits, I have got ple­nty of time now and pret­ty good wea­ther and I enjoy the place and taking pho­tos.
The­re is a short val­ley, Wilc­z­ek­da­len, lea­ding from Maria Musch­buk­ta to Nord­la­gu­ne (the nort­hern lagoon). This val­ley plays a role in some nice sto­ries from the Aus­tri­an win­te­ring. It is just a few hund­red metres long, but it could take half a day in seve­re con­di­ti­ons to get water from the lagoon.

The nort­hern lagoon is sepa­ra­ted from the sea by a wide beach ridge. A nice pie­ce of natu­ral land­s­cape archi­tec­tu­re! The­re are still some remains of old huts on this beach ridge: remains of trap­pers’ huts and from various Nor­we­gi­an and Ame­ri­can sta­ti­ons that whe­re built in this area during the second world war.

A bit hig­her up, the­re is Gam­le Met­ten, nice­ly loca­ted on a moss-green pla­teau. The „old wea­ther sta­ti­on“ was built and used for some time after the war. For Jan May­en vete­rans, it stands for the best peri­od in the histo­ry of the island: the sta­ti­on was well built, qui­te com­for­ta­ble, and nice­ly loca­ted bet­ween the sea, the nort­hern lagoon and Bee­ren­berg. Storms could be extre­me, though: a simp­le memo­ri­al marks the place, just 35 metres from the nea­rest house, whe­re sta­ti­on lea­der Aksel Liberg was blown by an extre­me gust during a hea­vy storm. He did not mana­ge to return against the wind. Just 35 metres! They found him two days later, fro­zen solid.

Gal­le­ry – Jan May­en – Nord­la­gu­ne – 16th June 2017

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

Today, the wea­ther is far from extre­me. I can make good use of my time to enjoy the place and its sur­roun­dings, befo­re I start the long way back. In Jøs­sing­da­len, I see a Whooper’s swan, a rare dis­co­very on Jan May­en and some­thing I had real­ly not exepc­ted at all. Whooper’s swans live for examp­le in Ice­land. The­re are almost annu­al sightin­gs of non-bree­ding indi­vi­du­als here on Jan May­en, but they do not belong here and have to be con­si­de­red a local rari­ty. Let’s hope he makes it back to his fel­lows.

Jan May­en – Kval­ross­buk­ta – 15th June 2017

Natu­re has pla­ced a lot of open sea bet­ween Ice­land and Jan May­en. It is about 460 miles from Isaf­jör­dur to Kval­ross­buk­ta, and a sai­ling boat is not a race hor­se. Expect the cros­sing to take three days, and that is exact­ly what it was for us. Three days in a 60 foot boat on high sea are not everybody’s cup of tea. Peop­le can grow their sea legs or find out that they do not have any, and it does take some pati­ence, espe­cial­ly if you find out that rea­ding a book does not make you feel bet­ter while the boat is moving. Occa­sio­nal­ly, we see some dol­phins or a wha­le. The con­stant head­winds are not too strong, but still, they do not make the boat fas­ter or our life on board bet­ter.

Ever­y­bo­dy sur­faces again after three days, as Jan May­en appears from the clouds. Not more than a shadow to begin with, the shadows turn into slo­pes and cliffs, and final­ly we have Kval­ross­buk­ta ahead of us, the desti­na­ti­on of our dreams, or rather: whe­re our dreams are to start.

Peop­le and mate­ri­als are soon brought ashore and tents are put up – as men­tio­ned, solid archi­tec­tu­re is important, and qui­te a few lava rocks and drift­wood logs are moved to anchor the tents safe­ly.

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

It hap­pens that we are not alo­ne, at least for a cou­p­le of hours: the sup­ply ship of the Nor­we­gi­an sta­ti­on is in the bay, the bow par­ked on the beach which is sur­pri­sin­gly calm. Pal­let after pal­let of sup­plies and mate­ri­als of all kinds are taken to the shore and trans­por­ted to the sta­ti­on, which is on the other side of the island. In the evening, the ship lea­ves and we are on our own in our litt­le base­camp.

Ice­land – Jan May­en – 12th June, 2017

After the recent trip to the arc­tic islands in the north Atlan­tic, Lofo­ten-Bear Island-Spits­ber­gen, now fol­lows ano­t­her trip to an arc­tic island in the north Atlan­tic, name­ly Jan May­en, this wild, litt­le vol­ca­nic island nor­the­ast of Ice­land. Jan May­en has been a con­stant high­light of my arc­tic sum­mer for several years now: wild, beau­ty­ful, remo­te, with lots of pla­ces to dis­co­ver and end­less hiking. But it is also a tough and deman­ding place.

Accom­mo­da­ti­on is not on a com­for­ta­ble ship, but in a simp­le base­camp in tents on vol­ca­nic sand which is blown around by the wind. Tons of stones and drift­wood logs have to be moved to anchor the tents safe­ly in case of strong winds, which is not at all unusu­al on Jan May­en.

I have made my litt­le, high-qua­li­ty Swe­dish tent extra storm-pro­of. Jan May­en in a tent can be pret­ty uncom­for­ta­ble; without a tent, it will not be bet­ter.

Gal­le­ry – Ice­land – Jan May­en – 12th June, 2017

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

The expe­di­ti­on to Jan May­en begins with the trip to Isaf­jör­dur, the capi­tal of Icelands’s beau­ti­ful fjords in the nor­thwest. I use the sunshi­ne and the remai­ning hours befo­re depar­tu­re for a litt­le hike in the sur­roun­dings befo­re ever­y­bo­dy is get­ting rea­dy on board SY Auro­ra.

It is nice to see fami­li­ar faces: Skip­per Vidar was the Aurora’s mate last year, and gla­cier­man Magnus „Mag­gi“ had also deci­ded that one ascent of Bee­ren­berg was not enough for him. Mate Sandri­ne makes the team com­ple­te. The who­le group comes from Ger­ma­ny this time, all six of them.

On the way to Jan May­en

Let’s go to Jan May­en! That is the mot­to of the day. After the trip to Bear Island and some days of war­ming up in com­pa­ra­tively sou­thern lati­tu­des (“Elbe­da­len” ins­tead of Advent­da­len), I am now on the way to Ice­land to join SY Auro­ra for an exci­ting trip to the wild, vol­ca­nic island in the far north. Three days of sai­ling over the open oce­an from Ice­land, and then an exci­ting week on Jan May­en.

Keep your fin­gers cros­sed for good wea­ther! We take care of the rest.

Next desti­na­ti­on: Jan May­en

Jan Mayen

Old ammu­ni­ti­on found in polar bears bodies

An auto­psy reve­a­led shot­gun ammu­ni­ti­on in the fat tis­sue of the bodies of two polar bears. One, a fema­le with a cub, was shot in June 2016 in Aus­t­fj­ord­nes. Only two mon­ths later a Rus­si­an rese­ar­cher shot ano­t­her fema­le polar bear in For­lan­det.

Polar­be­ar with cub

Polarbear with cub

The shot was encap­su­la­ted in the fat and fle­sh of the bears in both ani­mals, which means it must have hit them well befo­re they were kil­led in 2016. Ammu­ni­ti­on was found in several pla­ces of the bodies. Knut Fos­sum, envi­ron­men­tal direc­tor for the Sys­sel­man­nen (Gover­nor of Spits­ber­gen), pre­su­mes that the shots were fired from a rela­tively short distance. Pro­bab­ly someo­ne wan­ted to sca­re away the polar bears with pel­lets, but hit them. Shot is unli­kely to hurt a polar bear serious­ly, but serious inju­ry may occur if, for examp­le, a joint or an eye is hit. Vete­ri­na­ri­ans refer to the case of a rein­de­er that was kil­led with an air­gun. Addi­tio­nal­ly, even smal­ler inju­ries may lead to pain and inflamma­ti­on.

Polar bears are strict­ly pro­tec­ted on Spits­ber­gen, inju­ring them or kil­ling them will be punis­hed. Shoo­ting at a bear with shot­guns to sca­re it away is both unsui­ta­ble and ille­gal.

How long the polar bears alrea­dy car­ri­ed the ammu­n­ii­on in their bodies and whe­ther they suf­fe­red from pain, is not cer­tain.

Source: Sval­bard­pos­ten

Floo­ding of Glo­bal Seed Vault attracts inter­na­tio­nal media – eight mon­th after!

Inter­na­tio­nal media repor­ted for several weeks about a lecka­ge in the Glo­bal Seed Vault, whe­re seeds of all coun­tries are stored for thousands of years.

Glo­bal Seed Vault – Seeds for genera­ti­ons?

Global Seed Vault

The floo­ding actual­ly hap­pen­ed – but alrea­dy in Octo­ber 2016! An arti­cle in the Nor­we­gi­an news­pa­per Dag­b­la­det in May 2017 men­tio­ned the leaka­ge with cor­rect date. But on 19th May 2017 an inat­ten­ti­ve jour­na­list of “The Guar­di­an” made a cur­rent mes­sa­ge out of that arti­cle. High tem­pe­ra­tures in com­bi­na­ti­on with weeks of rai­ny wea­ther were men­tio­ned, which final­ly led to a flood in the ent­ran­ce area of the Glo­bal Seed Vault. Ever­ything cor­rect, just more than half a year ago.

A mes­sa­ge, but no news

Even the big media houses Reu­ters and Vox jum­ped on the band­wa­gon, appar­ent­ly without che­cking the source. A pho­ne call to Hege Njaa Aschim would have been enough to cla­ri­fy the misun­derstan­ding. Aschim is press offi­cer of Stats­by­gg, a sta­te-run com­pa­ny who mana­ges and main­tains the Glo­bal Seed Vault. But after all, nume­rous other news­pa­pers, radio and TV sta­ti­ons wan­ted to know more pre­cise­ly: Hund­reds of press requests reached Aschim in one week! She could cor­rect, that it was a real mes­sa­ge, but not real­ly news.

Decep­ti­ve secu­ri­ty?

The fact that the Glo­bal Seed Vault, which has actual­ly been con­struc­ted for eter­ni­ty, must alrea­dy be repai­red after less than ten years, seems almost less important now. The actu­al camp, which now con­tains near­ly one mil­li­on seed packets from 73 insti­tu­tes and gene banks, was not affec­ted by the water. Howe­ver, a trans­for­mer was des­troy­ed and the fire bri­ga­de had to pump the tun­nel, which leads 100 meters down to the actu­al camp.

Deeply locked in in the per­ma­frost, the Glo­bal Seed Vault was belie­ved to be safe from floo­ding. Now inves­ti­ga­ti­ons are to be made as to how the camp can be secu­red against warm peri­ods. 37 mil­li­on crowns (ca. 3,8 mil­li­on Euros) will be pro­vi­ded for that.

Source: Dagens Nærings­liv

Bill­efjord – 1st May, 2017

In the morning, the wind turns direct­ly into Skans­buk­ta, which does not hap­pen too often. But the eas­tern side of Bill­efjord is per­fect­ly shel­te­red. And per­fect­ly sun­ny. A good oppor­tu­ni­ty for a final lan­ding of this trip. Beach rid­ges and mari­ne ter­as­ses, drift­wood and the Bill­efjor­den fault zone, we spend time with all of this as well as with the beau­ti­ful views and the silence.

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

We have not yet given up hope for a polar bear sigh­t­ing. We are pret­ty sure that one or two polar bears will be around in the area. The­re is still ice in Adolf­buk­ta in front of Nor­dens­kiöld­breen and in Petu­nia­buk­ta, with ple­nty of seals. We keep watching until the eyes start bur­ning. Not­hing in terms of polar bears. Well, you can’t have it all wit­hin a few days. A polar bear sigh­t­ing would have been the icing on the cake, but this cake has been a gre­at one even without icing on it. It is a gre­at trip that is com­ing to an end now as we approach Lon­gye­ar­by­en.


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