Looking Up in Svalbard

After it’s annual four month absence, the sun returned to Longyearbyen, Svalbard yesterday.

Read about it in Svalbard’s English language newspaper Ice People.

Svalbard: Fastest Warming Place on Earth

Here’s a nicely done twenty-two minute documentary called Svalbard: Fastest Warming Place on Earth, from ARTE Reportage.

New Column at 3 Quarks Daily

My monthly column is up at 3 Quarks Daily: This month, a Russian town in the Norwegian Arctic.


Not to be paranoid about my lovely sometimes home, but this has been around in the Finnish press, and it reads as uncomfortably close to this.

Barentsburg: Russian Svalbard

Nice article at ArcticToday.com about a new push for tourism to replace coal mining in Barentsburg, the Russian city on Svalbard, at 78 degrees north latitude.

Here are two excerpts from Out in the Cold about visiting Svalbard for the March, 2015 total solar eclipse.

Photo from the Svalbard Gallery at EarthPhotos.com.

Quotes: The People’s King

King Haakon VII of Norway, as quoted by Lynne Olson in Last Hope Island,

“was known to his people as ‘Herre Konge’ (‘Mr. King’) rather than ‘Your Majesty.'”

Photo Safari North

In his work as a landscape and advertising photographer based in Hamburg, Jan Erik Waider tells me he spends up to half of each year on the road, much of it in the Nordic countries. We all benefit from his time investment.

Click through and enjoy Jan Erik’s portfolio. I think it’s beautiful.

Photo Essay: Lofoten Islands

Here’s a nice photo essay from Norway’s lovely Lofoten Islands in Roads and Kingdoms:

Eclipse Week

The total solar eclipse of 20 March, 2015, as seen from Longyearbyen, Svalbard, Norway. Click to enlarge at EarthPhotos.com.

Eclipse Week

Enjoy this video of the March 20, 2015 eclipse in Svalbard, beginning just before totality and running until shortly after. At the beginning, the sun appears to be out as usual while obviously something is up because meanwhile it’s getting dark on the ground.

This is why a partial eclipse just won’t do. Annie Dillard wrote that the difference between a partial eclipse and a total one is the difference between kissing a man and marrying him.

That’s it. The two just can’t be compared.