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The landscape in central and southern Nordenskiöld Land has its own charme. Narrow, curved valleys such as Todalen and Gangdalen. And then Reindalen, Spitsbergen’s biggest ice-free valley, where you get an impression of infinite spaces (and wind …). Unfortunately, we could hardly see anything during the trip over Slakbreen and Gruvfonna, the usual route to Sveagruva, because the clouds were low. But what we saw was the more charming. Abstract lines. Natural artistry.

Svea Nord is where Norwegian mining is going on these days, and this, followed by a road built on a glacier and the actual mining settlement Sveagruva, are not aesthetical highlights in Spitsbergen’s nature, but an industrial landscape. Whatever you think of coal mining in the arctic: this is interesting to see and certainly a change from glaciers and white, snow-covered mountains.

(Svea Nord was closed in 2015 and the following years. You can visit Svea Nord and the whole coal mining complex of Sveagruva digitally on this website).

The hut at Blåhuken in Van Mijenfjord woke up some emotions of nostalgia, from a long ski trip in 2001 and a number of cold nights.

It was really cold, and already then the hut wasn’t in good shape anymore …

spitsbergen sveagruva (gallery)

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


last modification: 2020-02-11 · copyright: Rolf Stange