Voyage 7315

Expedition Svalbard

 

 

Day 1 - July 6, 2013 -  Longyearbyen, Svalbard  

 

The first day of this tour started with typical Svalbard weather for this year; cloudy skies and sometimes rain.

 


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Day 2 - July 7, 2013 -  North-East Spitsbergen, Krossfjorden, 14th of July glacier, Svalbard 

 

 I was further out when I heard a massive crack, similar to the sound of a gunshot, but it was the glacier grinding forward. The noise I heard was probably a crevasse opening up.

 


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Day 3 - July 8, 2013 - Andøyane Islands and Monacobreen

With a zodiac full of eager guests, we sat quietly hoping the timing would be right. Luck was in our favor, and within minutes, a section of the nearly 30-meter-high wall of ice broke apart and collapsed into the bay. What an incredible show to end the day’s adventures.


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Day 4 - July 9, 2013 - Ice cruising in the Arctic Ocean

Today’s mission, polar bears! The scenery was beautiful with an overcast sky and plenty of sea ice, the perfect platform to look for the King of the Arctic.


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Day 5 - July 10, 2013 - Faksevagen, Zeipelodden and Alkefjellet, Svalbard, Norway

Captain Adam guided Silver Explorer across the Hinlopenstrait, and even before we had arrived at Alkefjellet we were rewarded with spectacular views of the fascinating geology of Svalbard: here a basaltic intrusion had caused the calcareous layers above and below to morph into marble and the ledges that had been created by erosion held thousands of “nesting” guillemots.


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Day 6 - July 11, 2013 -  Kvitøya, Svalbard 

 

After lunch the ship arrived at our destination – Kvitoya. On our arrival we were greeted by dozens of walrus in the water – bobbing up and down, looking at us, curious. They would approach, check us out, then suddenly dash off in a flurry of splashes!

 


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Day 7 - July 12, 2013 - Kapp Lee then Discobukta, Edgeoya, Svalbard

Our first very pleasant surprise could be seen from the ship as we approached. We could see several walrus lounging in the shallow waters just offshore. These magnificent creatures have been missing from this location for many years, but it was great to see that they were starting to re-colonize the area. Several young males also swam over to inspect some of our anchored Zodiacs!


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Day 8 - July 12, 2013 - Burgerbukta, Gnalodden, Hornsund, Svalbard

On this hot summer day it sounded like the ice was “singing”. By breaking and melting, the air bubbles in the ice were set free to produce a magnificent sound in the overwhelming silence of the arctic. Small, big, blue and white icebergs were surrounding the Zodiac. It was a wonderful sight and a fantastic feeling to be a part of this unique nature.


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Day 9 - July 14, 2013 - Bear Island, Svalbard

Bear Island is one of my favourite Zodiac cruises, and today was no exception. We lowered the boats and took our guests out for a 90-minute Zodiac ride that many will never forget. The sea conditions were choppy and made the ride quite bouncy and exciting, but the landscape was worth it.


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Day 10 - July 15, 2013 - At Sea, Tromsø, Norway

The final days of this expedition have been dominated by reflection and celebration. We have reached the end of our exploration of the Svalbard Archipelago. This is a special place beyond description, extremely powerful and fragile at the same time. With all that we have experienced and learned, we can return home with a newfound knowledge of how special the Arctic region is, and how important it is to protect it for future generations.


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