Position update 08.39 CEST: 69.99609 N, 176.1991 E
Note: Also “Peter 1” confirms problems with satellite coverage and reporting of Spot positions.
Expedition Report, 08.55 CEST:
“We started out just fine from Pevek, but some hours ago we again got a headwind – a stiff breeze straight in our faces. These hopeless wind conditions seem to haunt us and keep delaying our journey. Moreover, according to the weather forecast this is likely to last for several days. Big steel boats such as “Peter 1” can just start up their diesels and plough through. Our little outboard can do nothing in such waves; the propeller will be lifted out of the water for each wave and won’t provide any progress. We are forced to tack against the wind and waves, which takes twice the time.
We persist, as always, but right now it feels a bit frustrating!
The “Northern Passage” is charting a course along the coast toward Cape Schmidt (Mys Schmidta), a settlement due southeast from our present position.”
PS. I am told our position messages are not registering.
I assure you we are regularly sending Spot messages, every 4 hours.
Wrangel Island – the northernmost UNESCO World Heritage Site
Wrangel Island (Ostrov Vrangelya) is a breeding ground for polar bears (having the highest density of dens in the world), seals, Walrus, and lemmings. During the summer it is visited by many types of birds. Arctic fox also make their home on the island.
Woolly mammoths survived there until 1700 BC, the most recent survival of all known mammoth populations. However, due to limited food supply, they were much smaller in size than typical mammoths. Domestic Reindeer were introduced in the 1950s and their numbers are managed at around 1,000 in order to reduce their impact on nesting bird grounds. In 1975 musk ox were also introduced. The population has grown from 20 to about 200 animals. Recently, Arctic Wolf have been spotted on the island; wolves have lived on the island in historical times but previous packs were eradicated to reduce predation on reindeer and musk ox.
The flora includes 417 species of plants, double that of any other arctic tundra territory of comparable size and more than any other Arctic island. For these reasons, the island was proclaimed the northernmost UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2004.
The rocky island has a weather station and two fishing settlements on its southern shore.
(Source and photo: Wikipedia)