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Kapp Borthen


Kapp Borthen Map

Gene­ral: An expo­sed low-lying cape to the north of the lar­ge Tor­ell-gla­ciers, bet­ween Horn­sund and Bell­sund. Nobo­dy would ever think about going the­re, if it wasn’t for the wreck of a Ger­man air­craft for wea­ther obser­va­tions, that crash-lan­ded here during the second world war. The wreck is still the­re. Kapp Bor­then is at the outer coast, expo­sed to wind and seas of the open north Atlan­tic Oce­an. And the Tor­ell-gla­ciers do not exact­ly offer gre­at pro­tec­tion from eas­ter­ly winds eit­her, they are rather likely to pro­du­ce unp­lea­sent cata­ba­tic winds them­sel­ves. Thus, Kapp Bor­then is very rare­ly visi­ted, but is can be an inte­res­t­ing curio­si­ty.

For more, detail­ed infor­ma­ti­on: the Gui­de­book Spits­ber­gen-Sval­bard

Guidebook Spitsbergen-Svalbard

Kapp Borthen - a grim, lunar landscape with remains from dark days

Kapp Bor­then – a grim, lunar land­scape with remains from dark days.

Geo­lo­gy: Base­ment rocks, almost com­ple­te­ly cover­ed with Qua­ter­nary ‘dirt’ (sor­ry…) such as beach rid­ges, flu­vi­al depo­sits, morai­nes.

Land­scape: The moun­ta­ins of the west coast and espe­ci­al­ly the lar­ge Tor­ell-gla­ciers make for a scenic back­ground. Kapp Bor­then its­elf is a very bar­ren, rather fea­tur­e­less tun­dra plain and, in its eas­tern part, a moon-like morai­ne land­scape. The area lea­ves a dead, inhos­pi­ta­ble impres­si­on.

Flo­ra and Fau­na: I haven’t seen any­thing living the­re, even vege­ta­ti­on is rather scar­ce.

Histo­ry: Most­ly limi­t­ed to the war histo­ry. A Ger­man figh­ter pla­ne, a Ju 88 from Banak in nor­t­hern Nor­way, had to crash land here on 14 Sep­tem­ber 1942 after dama­ge from fights against an allied con­voy. The crew was soon picked up by ano­ther Ger­man pla­ne on an appoin­ted emer­gen­cy landing site in the tun­dra about 20 km fur­ther north. They des­troy­ed the Ju 88 befo­re they left. The wreck is still the­re, a bit inland; a ghost­ly memo­ri­al to the insa­ni­ty which rea­ched even the remo­test cor­ners of the glo­be.

Kapp Borthen



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last modification: 2014-10-28 · copyright: Rolf Stange