Polar bear day
Our guides are blogging on board the ships. Below, please read about one of the days on the expedition “Exploration of Svalbard”, 5th – 15th July.
Weather: Sunshine and clouds.
Mammals and birds: Polar bears (6), harp seals, ivory gull.
During the night we sailed eastwards, south of Nordaustlandet. Due to heavy ice conditions the ship had to turn around in the early morning and go back again towards Spitsbergen. That would turn out to be a fantastic decision.
It was a beautiful day, the ice made the surrounding water flat calm and the sun was making its way through the light clouds. The first polar bear was spotted in the distance after breakfast, the second one soon after. The scouting for polar bear intensified and suddenly there was another one resting on a pile of ice blocks. Captain slowly took the ship closer. After some time, the bear made a short stroll, laid down again while mirroring himself in a pond of water on the ice. The image was just breathtaking.
More polar bears! After lunch, a lone male and a female with a cub were spotted at the same time. We got close and got another fantastic polar bear meeting. The beauty of the bears, the landscape of the pack ice with edge of Austfonna in the background was overwhelming.
/Caroline Svärd, Guide
Since 1999, we have taken travellers on once-in-a-lifetime trips to Svalbard. From May to September our three small expedition ships, carrying only 12 and 53 passengers, explore this magnificent Arctic archipelago. Unpredictability and flexibility are the main keywords when you travel with PolarQuest as the exact route depends on weather, ice conditions and wildlife encounters. Sometimes you might be woken up in the middle of the night if a polar bear has been spotted on the ice.