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Category: The Arctic

Update from the Arctic

Update from the Arctic

They finally dished out computer passwords! It is very slow though, and hard to get to the computer in the evenings. All is well in the ice and everything on board is quite relaxed, so I think it is going to be a nice cruise. The journey over here was horrible though! The ship has no keel and rolls to about 40 degrees!

A couple of photos of the midnight sun…

We are now in thick ice with big pressure ridges, and the ship pretty much can’t get any further, so they are going to moor to a big ice floe and start the 5-day drift station.

I saw my first Polar bear! :- ). Quite a long way away – but managed to get some photographic evidence of it. I think there are quite a few around, as I also saw some foot-prints in an iceflow that the ship broke throught. I wish I got a photo of that!

Today I got in the helicopter at about 9.30 and don’t think we landed back on the ship until about 19:30. Lots of flying around to find leads for the ship through the ice, and also two landings for CTD’s.

We had to spend some time following polar bear foot prints in one area to check the bear was not hiding near! Then we actually landed on his trail, so I got to put my boot in one of his footprints – very yeti like! :-). There’s millions of the beasties, but don’t worry – I’m fairly sure I’m not the slowest runner in the group!…

These pictures are from mooring the ship to an ice flow this evening.

I have to be up at 7:30 tomorrow, so that’s all my news for now!

Paul is at sea

Paul is at sea

Paul is away at sea until 2nd June. The reality of this statement suddenly dawned on me this afternoon as I scribbled a note to stick on my office door. I have less than 48 hours left on dry land! On Wednesday afternoon I will join the Norwegian Coast Guard ship KV Svalbard and head towards Fram Strait where my friends at the Norwegian Polar Institute and I plan to collect measurements to determine how much freshwater (from precipitation and melting ice) is flowing out of the Arctic Ocean. I’ve posted a map below that shows roughly where we’ll be going.

The ship is alongside in Breivika (Tromsø’s docks) at the moment and I went to have a look on my way home from work this afternoon. My first impression is that it has very few windows! – but that’s not all bad with 24 hour daylight. I should have internet access onboard and plan to post some more updates from much further north…