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Yearly Archives: 2023 − News & Stories


Dunøya­ne & Horn­sund – 12 Sep­tem­ber 2013

We have got time, we have got wea­ther of all sorts, so we’ll attempt a cir­cum­na­vi­ga­ti­on of Spits­ber­gen – it is quite some years ago that we did that the last time in Sep­tem­ber. So let’s go for it. The first long leg of our cir­cum­na­vi­ga­ti­on took us during the night far down south. During the mor­ning we rea­ched Dunøya­ne and had sui­ta­ble con­di­ti­ons for a landing, so of cour­se we went for it. Later we went into Horn­sund, all the way into Sama­rin­vå­gen, whe­re we had a fabu­lous pan­ora­ma from a litt­le hill.

Gal­lery – Dunøya­ne & Horn­sund – 12 Sep­tem­ber 2013

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

With Anti­gua into the arc­tic Sep­tem­ber: the start in Isfjord

Once again we sail out into the arc­tic autumn, “Spits­ber­gen under sail” 2023 with good old Anti­gua. It was a beau­tiful start, sai­ling sil­ent­ly across Isfjord.

The anchor fell at Kapp Wijk, whe­re we also spent the first mor­ning. Beau­tiful Sep­tem­ber light, beau­tiful sce­n­ery, colourful tun­dra, fri­end­ly reinde­er, and as we just wan­ted to return to the ship, a lar­ge pod of Belugas swam along the shore right next to us! It must have been at least 70-80, pos­si­bly more. Unfor­gettable.

In the after­noon, we made a visit to the gre­at gla­cier Sveab­reen. A gre­at first day!

Gal­lery – Isfjord: Kapp Wijk & Sveab­reen

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

For­lands­und & Isfjord

The sum­mer is pret­ty much over, and the tran­si­ti­on peri­od, the equi­va­lent of the autumn of lower lati­tu­des, can be beau­tiful – but it can also be grey and wet. Some­ti­mes ever­y­thing at the same time, grey, wet – and beau­tiful. But it can be hard for tho­se who love to get out and do some­thing exci­ting out the­re in natu­re. For this day, we had to be con­tent with a litt­le walk in Ny-Åle­sund and a late after­noon beach walk at Poo­le­pyn­ten on Prins Karls For­land. Well, we were ashore two times, the­re is litt­le to com­plaint about! And it doesn’t make any­thing bet­ter any­way. It does not make sen­se to argue with natu­re. We rather lis­ten to what she tells us and go along with it.

And on our final full day we got a beau­tiful day in Isfjord. Even some sun­ny views on the beau­tiful gla­ciers and moun­ta­ins in Trygg­ham­na and at Bore­breen. A gre­at good­bye for this time – time was fly­ing again, and this trip, ful­ly packed with beau­ty and good expe­ri­en­ces and impres­si­ons, is sud­den­ly over. What a trip! A big thanks to skip­per and ship owner Mario and his good crew. Mean­der was a beau­tiful, good, safe home for us (“the ship didn’t sink”, as someone put it so nice­ly during the warm words of the last evening 😄 true inde­ed). Big thanks to all who were on board and con­tri­bu­ted to the good expe­ri­ence!

Pho­to gal­lery – For­lands­und & Isfjord

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

Kross­fjord & Kongsfjord

The mor­ning found us in Kross­fjord – at least accor­ding to modern navi­ga­tio­nal methods. Views out­side didn’t reve­al much about our whe­re­a­bouts. Fog down to sea level. In the end, we mana­ged to find a sui­ta­ble place for at least a short landing in Ebelt­oft­ham­na to have a look at the remains of the Ger­man wea­ther sta­ti­on of 1912-14.

After a brief visit to Fjor­ten­de Juli­breen, we deci­ded Ny-Åle­sund was the best place to be in this kind of wea­ther, fog and, in the after­noon, also rain.

Pho­to gal­lery – Kross­fjord & Kongsfjord

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

Wood­fjord: Wors­leyne­set & Mus­ham­na

It was time to move west again. A night of sai­ling took us into Wood­fjord. A won­derful sky with smooth, clear light abo­ve the wide, beau­tiful tun­dra and land­scape of Reins­dyr­flya and sur­roun­ding islands near Wors­leyne­set.

Later we went to Mus­ham­na, from the trap­per huts to the per­fect mir­ror images of land­scape in the shel­te­red lagoon.

Pho­to gal­lery – Wood­fjord: Wors­leyne­set & Mus­ham­na

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

Fur­thest north: Sjuøya­ne

Ano­ther lucky wea­ther day! The wea­ther win­dow ope­ned up a litt­le bit more again, so we took the oppor­tu­ni­ty to ven­ture up north to Sjuøya­ne, the nor­t­her­most islands of Sval­bard. And yet again, talk of a hap­py com­bi­na­ti­on of right place and right time. A gol­den mor­ning on Phippsøya. And then under sail to Ros­søya, the very nor­t­hern­most island (if you want to call it an island) in this part of the Arc­tic.

Pho­to gal­lery – Sjuøya­ne: Phippsøya & Ros­søya

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

In Wahl­enberg­fjord

After the grey wea­ther of the last cou­ple of days it was a gre­at delight to see the sun and blue sky again: we got some gol­den days, two of which we spent in Wahl­enberg­fjord, on the west side of Nord­aus­t­land, or rather, in the heart of this magi­cal island (so this blog ent­ry is about two days. I have to catch up a litt­le bit).

So, gol­den days. Impec­ca­ble wea­ther. Haun­tingly beau­tiful land­scape. An unfor­gettable evening on an unknown beach and a long hike in the tun­dra and over the hills in inner­most Wahl­enberg­fjord, with rare views over a very silent like and wide ice caps.

Pho­to gal­lery – Wahl­enberg­fjord

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

Hin­lo­pen Strait

The day in Murch­ison­fjord was a bit grey. A good reason to visit places whe­re most of the fun doesn’t depend on pan­o­r­amic views. The old rese­arch sta­ti­on Kinn­vi­ka, for exam­p­le. Or the old Pomor cross on Kros­søya.

Pho­to gal­lery – Hin­lo­pen Strait (1)

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

While things were going uphill wea­ther-wise, we could enjoy some of Hinlopen’s won­derful wild­life. Ten thou­sands of Brunich’s guil­l­emots at Alkef­jel­let. They are get­ting fewer now, many are alre­a­dy on their way towards south Green­land.

Also with the polar bears, we were lucky again …

Pho­to gal­lery – Hin­lo­pen Strait (2)

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

In Sorg­fjord: Cro­zier­pyn­ten & Eolus­ne­set

A day in Sorg­fjord is some­thing for tho­se with some spe­cial inte­rest in histo­ry. Well, and for tho­se who love some good sce­n­ery. Oh yes, and for tho­se who love some good hiking, of cour­se.

The­re is inde­ed some­thing for ever­y­bo­dy 🙂

This is not the place to repeat all the histo­ry. The Swe­dish depart­ment of the Rus­si­an-Swe­dish Arc de Meri­di­an expe­di­ti­on (Cro­zier­pyn­ten), wha­ling (Eolus­ne­set), the nor­t­hern­most sea batt­le ever, Schrö­der-Stranz … the who­le packa­ge.

Ein Tag im Sorg­fjord ist natür­lich spe­zi­ell für die his­to­risch inter­es­sier­ten. Ja, und natür­lich für die, die schö­ne Land­schaf­ten lie­ben. Ach ja, und für die, die ger­ne wan­dern.

It would be exag­ge­ra­ted to say that we had gre­at wea­ther, but nevert­hel­ess, tho­se who wan­ted to go for a good hike got a serious chan­ce to do so.

Pho­to gal­lery – Sorg­fjord: Cro­zier­pyn­ten & Eolus­ne­set

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

Spitsbergen’s nor­thwest cor­ner: from Mag­da­le­nefjord to Hol­miabuk­ta

Spitsbergen’s nor­thwest cor­ner: steep, rug­ged, icy, rocky … beau­tiful. From Mag­da­le­nefjord, whe­re we had ancho­red during the night, to Dan­s­køya, whe­re we went for a hike, to the magni­fi­cent Fuglefjord with all its ice and final­ly to Hol­miabuk­ta.

We saw no less than seven polar bears during this day, inclu­ding seve­ral swim­ming ones.

Pho­to gal­lery – Spitsbergen’s nor­thwest cor­ner: from Mag­da­le­nefjord to Hol­miabuk­ta

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

In For­lands­und: Sar­stan­gen & Fug­le­hu­ken

A night of sai­ling took us to the nor­t­hern part of For­lands­und, whe­re we were hoping to find wal­ru­ses. We were not dis­ap­poin­ted.

Later, we were hoping for a good walk at Fug­le­hu­ken, at the nor­t­hern tip of Prins Karls For­land. A beau­tiful area. But we were not alo­ne: a polar bear was try­ing to sneak up to seve­ral groups of har­bour seals that were res­t­ing on rocks in shal­low water …

Pho­to gal­lery – For­lands­und: Sar­stan­gen & Fug­le­hu­ken

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

Taking off with SV Mean­der: first day in Ekm­anfjord

The fan­ta­stic trip with SY Arc­ti­ca II came to an end two days ago, and now we are taking off again, this time with SV Mean­der for a cer­tain­ly not less fan­ta­stic trip 😊

To begin with, the sun is taking a day off. Clouds and fog also need their chan­ce. And as nobo­dy needs 2 meter waves, espe­ci­al­ly during the first night, we deci­de to spend the first day in Ekm­anfjord. The litt­le island of Flin­thol­men is fasci­na­ting with its strong land­scape con­trast bet­ween the red morai­ne on one side and green tun­dra on the other side. Very simi­lar to Cora­hol­men, which is not far at all.

Later we went for a hike on Blo­mes­let­ta, a beau­tiful tun­dra low­land with wide views from long lying hills. Fog banks add a lot of atmo­sphe­re to the beau­tiful moun­ta­ins in Ekm­anfjord such as Kapi­tol and Kolos­se­um.

In the late evening, we lea­ve Isfjord and sail nor­thwards.

Pho­to gal­lery – Isfjord: Ekm­anfjord

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

Isfjord: Erd­mann­flya, Ymer­buk­ta and back to Lon­gye­ar­by­en

The final day of this voya­ge in Spitsbergen’s stun­ning natu­re. After a short pas­sa­ge across Isfjord we rea­ched Erd­mann­flya and star­ted a good hike across this beau­tiful tun­dra area. That took a good cou­ple of hours, with love­ly rests to enjoy the sce­n­ery and the silence. What a beau­tiful coun­try!

For a final delight, Hein­rich went all out to give us some gre­at views of Esmark­breen, and then it was time to set cour­se for Lon­gye­ar­by­en. Some wha­les waved us good­bye as we went east in Isfjord.

Thus, a long, ama­zing trip came to an end. We have been to so many incre­di­bly beau­tiful and ama­zing places, we did good hikes, oh, and all the wild­life … unfor­gettable! A big thanks to ever­y­bo­dy who made a con­tri­bu­ti­on to this, to make it all work, to keep the spi­rits up, all the good food 😋 … first of all, of cour­se, skip­per Hein­rich Eggen­fell­ner, owner of the excel­lent Arc­ti­ca II! I am alre­a­dy loo­king for­ward to next year! ⛵️😊

Pho­to gal­lery – Isfjord: Erd­mann­flya, Ymer­buk­ta and back to Lon­gye­ar­by­en

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

From Van Keu­len­fjord to Fest­nin­gen

We spent the mor­ning in Van Keu­len­fjord with a litt­le, very love­ly hike in the beau­tiful area of Fleur-de-Lys­ham­na and Kapp Tos­ca­na. Won­derful sce­n­ery. Histo­ry not quite as won­derful, with remains of indus­tri­al-sca­le Belu­ga (white wha­le) slaugh­ter. But that is the his­to­ri­cal rea­li­ty. Igno­ring it does not make any­thing bet­ter.

In the after­noon, we made a short landing near Kapp Mar­tin, but it was a mat­ter of minu­tes until we found our­sel­ves back on board becau­se of a polar bear that came wal­king along. They have got the right of way, as simp­le as that.

But in exch­an­ge, we arri­ved at Fest­nin­gen in Isfjord ear­ly enough for a litt­le evening walk to round ano­ther gre­at day off.

Pho­to gal­lery – From Van Keu­len­fjord to Fest­nin­gen

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

Horn­sund & Dunøya­ne

We star­ted the day whe­re we had finis­hed yes­ter­day: in Horn­sund. Just on the other (south) side, in Gås­ham­na, with a love­ly hike. A lot of stuff to see: a lot of sce­n­ery, histo­ry and a curious arc­tic fox ❄️🦊🙂

Ano­ther high­light of the trip was then the landing on Dunøya­ne in the after­noon. A silent, beau­tiful perl of natu­re, not seen by too many peo­p­le. Dunøya­ne are a bird sanc­tua­ry which means they beco­me legal­ly acces­si­ble again from 16 August. Good thing.

Pho­to gal­lery – Gås­ham­na in Horn­sund & Dunøya­ne

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

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