Polar bears and more in the Hornsund…

9 June 2016

June 9, 2016

Spitsbergen, Hornsund

We have arrived at the Hornsund Fjord.
Sometimes it’s the simplicity of life you find here that is particularly touching.
Or maybe it’s the apparent simplicity: life reduced to its essence. We sailed
around, framed by steep jagged mountains which called to our rock climbers.
We enjoyed a warm welcome at the Polish research station. People live there for
a full year and must hang together.
Our walk along the burgeoning tundra to a breeding colony of auks was enjoyable, and we met a herd of reindeer nearby.
Later we sailed deeper into the fjord alongside the
glaciers: they are breathtaking when you get close to the ice walls with your boat.

When we were looking for an anchor spot, we met a group of seven belugas…! They were alongside a cliff, diving up and down in fishing groups, cornering their prey.
Eventually we anchored in a small cove: Selbukta, which was still covered with sea ice, perfect for a group of resting seals. Their peace was regularly disrupted by two polar bears who surprised the seals from beneath … Eat and be eaten here is the rule.

It is important to be the eaters, if you want to survive.

Heinz.

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