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HomeArctic blog: Jan Mayen, Spitsbergen → July 2017 review­ed: the south cape, polar bears and arc­tic Christ­mas

July 2017 review­ed: the south cape, polar bears and arc­tic Christ­mas

Con­side­ring public news, July was a rather calm month in Spits­ber­gen. Which is gre­at. No news are good news. Of cour­se, the­re is always some­thing, but all within reason. The reinde­er were doing well, the­re were no ava­lan­ches and no extre­me wea­ther situa­tions. We could pret­ty much just enjoy!

And so we did, most­ly with SV Anti­gua. We star­ted actual­ly alre­a­dy in late June, and the first high­light – I am coming to my per­so­nal per­spec­ti­ve – came quick­ly in shape of a rare landing near Spitsbergen’s south cape (Sør­kapp).

Sørkapp Land

Landing clo­se to Sør­kapp (the south cape) of Spits­ber­gen.

Other peo­p­le who were the­re with me will pro­ba­b­ly rather remem­ber the Blue wha­le that we saw clo­se up later the same day, or the polar fox fami­ly a day later. And no doubt, the­se are all pre­cious memo­ries. But for me per­so­nal­ly, well, I just love rare landings, the­se hid­den places that almost nobo­dy knows and even fewer peo­p­le ever get to. But the­se places to all have their secrets. More often than not, the­re is some­thing exci­ting to dis­co­ver!

Blue whale, Storfjord

Blue wha­le in Storfjord.

But still, the wild­life is a big chunk of Spitsbergen’s beau­ty. And the sight­ing of a fema­le polar bear with one cub who were feas­ting on the remains of a dead wha­le on Dan­s­køya were among­st the high­lights of the­se weeks!

Polar bears, Danskøya

Hap­py polar bear fami­ly and an unhap­py wha­le on Dan­s­køya.

And if you ask anyo­ne who was on board, then I am sure most will tell you that the landing on an ice floe is one of the most pre­cious memo­ries that they took home from this gre­at trip. How often do you have the chan­ce to stand on drift ice on 80 degrees north? Feel like Nan­sen! But not for 3 years … we left a bit ear­lier.

Ice landing on 80 degrees north

Ice landing on 80 degrees north.

Back in Lon­gye­ar­by­en, I could final­ly finish my arc­tic Christ­mas book (Ger­man only, sor­ry). The second book that I could finish and get prin­ted this year, after the Nor­we­gi­an ver­si­on of my Sval­bard gui­de­book! Final­ly, con­side­ring the arc­tic Christ­mas book, as I have to admit. It took me a good 10 years sin­ce I star­ted with this one! Making a book does always take time, but in this case one of the main pro­blems had been someone who would be able to crea­te the dra­wings that I had on my mind for this book. Until I saw last year – also on Anti­gua, by the way – what Nor­bert Wach­ter could do with a pen­cil and a sheet of paper. So we went, and here we are! Done! 🙂

Arktische Weihnachten

The arc­tic christ­mas book: final­ly in print in late July.



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last modification: 2018-01-11 · copyright: Rolf Stange