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Home* Triplogs with photo galleriesArctic blog: Jan Mayen, Spitsbergen → The arc­tic blog con­ti­nued: back to Lon­gye­ar­by­en!

The arc­tic blog con­ti­nued: back to Lon­gye­ar­by­en!

After a win­ter- and christ­mas peri­od in our sou­thern home, we return to our nort­hern home: back to Lon­gye­ar­by­en! We spend a few days in Nor­way on the way up, visi­t­ing good friends, befo­re we board the pla­ne in Oslo.

The flight lea­ves from Oslo Gar­der­mo­en in the morning and arri­ves in Lon­gye­ar­by­en mid-day. We fly away from the sun­light and into the darkness. While clim­bing up the lad­der to the pla­ne, we enjoy a few last moments of sun­light. They will be the last ones for several week.

Gal­le­ry flight to Lon­gye­ar­by­en

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

The magic of the polar night is wai­t­ing for us!

The moon is waxing – that is not a secret, that is the same ever­y­whe­re on Earth at the same time. But here, it is more important than else­whe­re. Not only becau­se far abo­ve the polar cir­cle the moon is hard­ly seen during the sum­mer, becau­se then it remains lar­ge­ly below the hori­zon unless it is new moon, when you don’t see it any­way. But now, in win­ter, the moon is stun­ning. And it is a very important light source, much more than in lati­tu­des whe­re the sun is more reli­able in win­ter­ti­me.

Polar night and moonshine in Adventdalen close to Longyearbyen

Advent­da­len in the polar night (I): the moon is shi­ning over Ope­raf­jel­let.

The appearan­ce of the coun­try is magi­cal. The moon is cas­ting sil­ver-blue light over the land­s­cape which is cove­r­ed with a thin lay­er of snow and ice. On pho­tos, the moon appears very bright so you might even think it is the sun.

Pho­to­gra­phing this kind of beau­ty is a chal­len­ge. Most pho­to­graphs are are far too bright. Of cour­se you can expo­se your pho­to until they look as if taken on a sun­ny day. The results will be beau­ti­ful but they don’t have much to do with rea­li­ty. Rea­li­ty IS haun­tin­g­ly beau­ti­ful, and it is, well … rea­li­ty! It doesn’t get much bet­ter than that, but it is hard to cap­tu­re in an image. The beau­ty that the eye which is accus­to­med to darkness per­cei­ves may just appe­ar as darkness on a rea­son­ab­ly rea­listic image. And that can also be rea­listic, but may­be not qui­te the rea­li­ty, if that makes sen­se.

Polar night and moonshine in Adventdalen close to Longyearbyen

Advent­da­len in the polar night (II): a bit dar­ker, a bit more rea­listic
(? depen­ding on how well your eyes are accus­to­med to darkness when you are out in the field).

I am try­ing to find a com­pro­mi­se which is clo­se to rea­li­ty and deli­vers the real beau­ty of the polar night at the same time.

Last but not least for this first ent­ry of my arc­tic blog 2019 an impres­si­on from Lon­gye­ar­by­en in the polar night. A per­spec­ti­ve that, I am sure, many of you will know, but pos­si­b­ly in very dif­fe­rent light con­di­ti­ons.

Longyearbyen in the polar night

High noon in Lon­gye­ar­by­en in polar night. The sun­dial does cur­r­ent­ly have some tech­ni­cal pro­blems 😉

Final­ly, let me men­ti­on that I have made a new pho­to book, focus­sing on aeri­al pho­to­gra­phy and thus showing the Arc­tic from a very unsu­al per­spec­ti­ve. In theo­ry, the book is in Ger­man, but in prac­ti­ce, it does hard­ly have text. 134 out of 137 pages do just have stun­ning pho­tos, pla­ce­n­a­mes and a litt­le map.
Nor­we­gens ark­ti­scher Nor­den (2) – Aeri­al Arc­tic shows Jan May­en and Sval­bard from the air.

Norwegens arktischer Norden (2) - Aerial Arctic

Rolf’s new pho­to book Nor­we­gens ark­ti­scher Nor­den (2) – Aeri­al Arc­tic shows Jan May­en and Spits­ber­gen from a new and stun­ning per­spec­ti­ve.

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last modification: 2019-01-20 · copyright: Rolf Stange
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