Tuesday 29th June.
Our foggy trip to Kapp Linné
A two hour boat trip to Kapp Linné meant it was an early foggy start for the group. After a very sunny weak in Longyearbyen we were disappointed to have ‘’fog, fog and more fog’’. For all we knew we were off to the North Pole. A slight swell meant it was a rather bumpy yet exciting ride with the zodiacs airborne off the larger waves. Fortunately the fog lifted slightly allowing the skipper to bring us in safely to Kapp Linné.
Kapp Linné which is situated at the mouth of Isfjorden is a geological mine field with exposed bedrock strata spanning 1.2 billion years. It was a relief to settle down and relax in the cosy sitting room for a quick lunch after the rough boat trip. After lunch and with bruised bums we ventured out onto the strand flat and walked along the beautiful Nordenskiöld coast. But of cause this was not just a little walk– we had three specialists with us: Ólafur who taught us all about the geological history, Ingibjörg showed us the delicate flora that covers the harsh windswept landscape and Elise our coordinator whose knowledge on the local birds was inspiring. We found semi fossilised whale bones protruding from the flats, easy to spot by the plush green carpet of vegetation feeding off the nutrients leeching out of the calcified remains.
Returning from the trip cold and hungry yet daring for more adventure we dived into the bone chilling Arctic Ocean. Jumping very quickly out, we were straight into the sauna to warm up. After an excellent dinner we chilled out listening to some Blues and Russian songs played on the guitar by two good musicians in our group. After a long tiring day we went to bed exhausted but privileged to have experienced such a journey through geological time. We were looking forward to the next day, hoping the fog would clear allowing us to see some of the beautiful scenery and high peaked mountains that we knew was surrounding us.
Authors: Marcus Zanacchi (Italy), Janin Schaffer (Germany)
Photos: Marcus Zanacchi
Dressed in survival suits ready for departure
Isfjord radio station
A dip in the Arctic Ocean
Field work at Kapp Linne