Day 8 |
Jun 19, 2008

Day At Sea and Seydisfjordur

By Esther Bruns, Staff

Today we were greeted by an overcast and grayish sky. The mercury of the thermometer did not manage to move past 8°C, rain and drizzle took their turns. It did not really surprise us that the ship was still moving quite a bit. Since the weather forecast did not indicate an improvement of the conditions in the near future, Captain Demel decided to steer the ship in a more easterly direction, heading towards Iceland. Everybody was quite delighted by the thought of having solid ground beneath their feet for a few hours. However, those of us with sea-legs managed to make it to The Theatre at 10:00 to hear Stefan’s talk about Volcanoes. He described the different types of volcanoes, where they occur and how they work.

After a short break, we gathered again at The Theatre to hear our Expedition Leader, Brad, brief us on our upcoming stop at Seydisfjordur, a village founded by Norwegian fishermen in 1848, which is now home to artists, musicians and craftsmen.

Just after lunch, the Prince Albert II entered Seydisfjordur Fjord, leading us to the picturesque village of Seydisfjordur, which, surrounded by snow-covered mountains, lies at the end of the fjord. Dotted with colorful, old wooden houses and a pretty wooden church Seydisfjordur invited all of us for a stroll. Some of us went for a walk to the waterfall, just at the entrance to the village. A few Prince Albert II parkas were spotted all the way up the mountain – mainly blue (crew) ones, by the way. The surroundings of the waterfall were covered with wild Lupine flowers – what a beautiful view and smell! Some of us went to take a look at the Taekniminjasafn Austurlands – the Technical Museum of East Iceland with displays not only on mechanics and electricity from the late 1800s to the 1950s, but also on communications and telephony. Here we learned that the first wire between Iceland and Europe was laid in 1906 and ended in Seydisfjordur.

At 19:30 all were back onboard and the Prince Albert II set sail for Jan Mayen. During the delicious Venetian Dinner, a call from the bridge announced Minke Whales along the starboard side. A nice view of these breaching whales during an excellent dinner rounded out our day.