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Hornsund: Gnålodden

360 degree panorama

Gnå­lod­den is loca­ted cen­tral­ly in Horn­sund under the moun­tain Gnål­ber­get. You have to keep an eye on many under­wa­ter rocks as you are approa­ching by boat, they have kil­led many zodiac out­board engi­ne pro­pel­lers.

Gnå­lod­den is a place with a lot to see wit­hin a small area. Just the rocky shore­li­ne is a sight in its­elf. The flat area is of limi­ted size, but beau­ti­ful­ly green with its mos­sy tun­dra, a clear indi­ca­ti­on for the pre­sence of lar­ge num­bers of Brunich’s guil­lemots and kit­ty­wa­kes that breed in the steep cliffs of Gnål­ber­get.

The old hut, which was built in 1907 or 1908, is a real eye­cat­cher. Until the pro­tec­tion of polar bears in 1973, it was part of a clas­si­cal polar bear hun­ting area. The bears came with drift ice around the south cape, up the west coast and into Horn­sund. In some years, hund­reds of them migra­ted through the fjord and back to the east coast: rich hun­ting grounds for trap­pers, inclu­ding the legen­da­ry Nor­we­gi­an fema­le hun­ter Wan­ny Wold­stad, who was one of the first acti­ve lady hun­ters in Spits­ber­gen when she win­te­red several times in Horn­sund during the 1930s.

The pan­ora­ma shows the main room of the hut, which is still regu­lar­ly used by sci­en­tists from the near-by Polish rese­arch sta­ti­on and accoasio­nal­ly by locals from Lon­gye­ar­by­en who take the long trip with snow mobi­les.

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last modification: 2019-02-23 · copyright: Rolf Stange
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