Last month I joined a scientific cruise on the Norwegian icebreaker Kronprins Haakon. Our plan was to reach station 01 at 84.55° N, 18.78° E north of Svalbard. But the exceptionally thick sea ice of 2 metres and more prevented this. We tried to get north but in vain, we only reached 80° N and a bit.
We were not alone. The Swedish icebreaker Oden and the German icebreaker Polarstern had the same issues. In the night from the 11 to 12 June we were quite near to the Polarstern – less than 10 nm if I remember correctly. The vessel was visible on the “OLEX” navigation screen.
After another five week expedition to the Gakkel Ridge, the Greenland Shelf and the Nansen Basin the Polarstern arrived in Tromsø today. Not at the port on the island (I guess, too many cruise ships) but in Tønsvik by the mainland. Some weeks ago I asked the Alfred Wegener Institut (AWI) if it was possible to visit the ship but it couldn’t be done this time. Anyhow I took the car after work and drove there to get at least some photos.
Hopefully I’ll get a opportunity for a visit another time. And yes – I long deeply for the Arctic when I see the Polarstern lying there or check the track in the internet.
But hiking in the Norwegian Nature always helps. Two photos from a short hiking trip after the icebreaker photos: