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Halvmåneøya

360°-PanoTour

Halvmå­neøya as a vir­tu­al pan­or­amic tour

Here is a 360° tour of Halvmå­neøya:

Halvmå­neøya (Half­moon Island) is a small, rocky island east of Edgeøya, exact­ly in the area whe­re the East Spits­ber­gen cur­rent brings a lot of hea­vy pack ice with a lot of polar bears in spring. This is whe­re pro­fes­sio­nal polar bear hun­ters had their most important hun­ting area. Trap­pers have win­te­red 8 times bet­ween 1946 and 1971, with a total catch of about 905 polar bears, most of them with selfshot traps. The „record“, if you want to use this term here, was set in 1964-65 with 144 bears by Andre­as Bjørns­vik and Kjell Johan­sen.

The hut Bjør­ne­borg was ori­gi­nal­ly built in 1904 and in 1935 it got more or less the shape it still has. Later modi­fi­ca­ti­ons were remo­ved again, in 1995 the hut was reno­va­ted. Next to Fred­heim in Tem­pel­fjord, Bjør­ne­borg is cer­tain­ly amongst the most famous trap­per huts in Spits­ber­gen.
The first Nor­we­gi­an win­te­ring on Halvmå­neøya was in 1898-99, but both win­te­rers died from scur­vy. Some remains of their hut can still be seen in a short distance south of Bjør­ne­borg, not far from the shore.

Graces, old selfshot traps, polar bear bones and remains of a second hut near the sou­thern end of the island are silent wit­nes­ses of inten­se polar bear hun­ting over several deca­des. The last win­te­ring trap­per on Halvmå­neøya was Per John­son in 1970-71.

Sin­ce 2010, the island is strict­ly pro­tec­ted becau­se of this his­to­ri­cal heri­ta­ge. The only part that can still be visi­ted is the area direct­ly around Bjør­ne­borg, the rest is off limits. Cra­zy, but that’s how it is.

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last modification: 2017-12-23 · copyright: Rolf Stange
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