Sunday, 8th August, 2010

 


 

 

 

Sundneset, Barentsøya and


Dolerittneset, Edgeøya

 

Overnight the Vavilov will negotiate Freemandsundet, the body of water

separating Barentsøya in the north from Edgeøya. At just 35 km long

and 6 km wide, it is susceptible to remaining blocked by ice late into the

summer. This will be just the second time this season the Vavilov has

been able to traverse the passage.

Remember, there is a word in the Greenlandic language,

which applies to life anywhere in the Arctic. It is

“imaqa” and it means “maybe”.

 

 

0630

Early morning tea, coffee and pastries are available in the Lounge/Bar

0700

Wake-up call

0730

Breakfast is served in the Dining Room

0900

We hope to land at Sundneset on Barentsøya

Barentsøya is the fourth largest island in Svalbard and is named after Willem Barents, the Dutch seafarer who discovered Spitsbergen in 1596. Sundneset (norg.=sound point) is at the south- west corner and is regarded as a ‘coastal plain’ with its rolling lowlands of dioritic bedrock. There is a rich cover of tundra and the several small lakes provide habitat for a variety of birds. We hope to offer a choice of walks, each with the possibility of bird and wildlife sightings.

1230

Lunch is served in the Dining Room

TBA

Cathy will open the Ship Shop. Standby for announcements.

1400

We hope to land at Dolerittneseton Edgeøya

Dolerittneset is near the north-west corner of Edgeøya and is named for the dark, dolerite (“balsaltic”) rock that curves along the surrounding steep cliffs. This site offers a rich representation of Svalbard’s history, from whaling and hunting to scientific expeditions.

Hut foundations and brick fragments are the only remnants of the hunting station from the 18th century Pomors (Russians from the White Sea area). The huts from Norwegian hunters remain standing, albeit in disrepair, and one hut has an unusual octagonal shape. Polar bear and fox were the hunters’ primary target. North of the huts is an area scattered with walrus bones, a sad testimony to their slaughter over three centuries. This was probably subsequent to the extensive whaling in this area in the 17th century.

It may be possible to see walrus in this area and there is rich bird life to be viewed, including possible grey phalaropes, eiders and purple sandpipers.

1630

Afternoon tea is served in the Lounge/Bar

1830

Maxwelcomes you to the Bar for Happy Hour

1930

Dinner is served in the Dining Room

2100

Evening Film: Please join Wolfgang in the Presentation Room for the film: The Boy Who Lived Among Polar Bears”