Saturday, December 02, 2006

Svalbard blogging

On Monday I shall post more on Steve Johnston's travels.
In the meantime, I came across someone called Malcolm who has blogged about his circumnavigation of Svalbard - visit the WEBSITE for loads of useful detail on the islands which he travelled round in August 2006. Here is his summary of the experience:

The last 10 days have been absolutely INCREDIBLE!
WOW! Words can't really describe what Nathan and I have just experienced, but I will try.

The expedition company Aurora Expeditions - faultless.
Landscape and wildlife - simply stunning.
Weather - unbelieveably magic!
Kayaking around icebergs - exhilarating - all 110 km of it.
My feelings? Privileged. Svalbard is absolutely one of the world's most beautiful places. I felt then and still feel now, priveleged to have seen something so wonderful, yet rarely seen. The isolation and pristine wilderness of this place is magical. Words fail me.

Unusually, the sea ice had drifted north, away from the northern tip of Svalbard allowing us to do a circumnavigation of Svalbard, not just Spitzbergen. In true 'expedition' style, Aurora threw the planned itinerary out the window and went exploring, taking us further north and then further east to places previously unvisited, because the opportunity presented itself. (My kinda company.) So, travelling in a clockwise direction, instead of coming south through the center of the archipelago, we continued east and came right around the east coast.

Remember that for the exam you need to appreciate that the islands have been written about in different ways. Malcolm's experiences would be good to compare with those of the earlier explorers I wrote about earlier.

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