Janne Robberstad

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Svalbard

By spotogspindel | April 3, 2014

Taking an early morning plane, I wake up to the captain´s voice: “And as you can see, we are now approaching our destination”. Looking out the window, this is what I see:

_MG_3109

A sight for Gods! Something I´ve never seen before and that fills me with awe. It feels like I´m at the end of the world…

I´m in Svalbard, mixing business with pleasure. Visiting my dear friend who moved to Longyearbyen (Longyear city). Svalbard is an Artic island. It´s only 1309 kilometers (813 miles) from the North pole.  This is the view from my friends window:

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Svalbard is an archipelago in the Arctic Ocean, constituting the northernmost part of Norway. Located north of mainland Europe, it is about midway between mainland Norway and the North Pole. The group of islands range from 74° to 81° north latitude, and from 10° to 35° east longitude. The largest island is Spitsbergen, followed by Nordaustlandet andEdgeøya. The administrative center is Longyearbyen, and other settlements, in addition to research outposts, are the Russian mining community of Barentsburg, the research community of Ny-Ålesundand the mining outpost of Sveagruva. The archipelago is administered by the Governor of Svalbard. It is the northernmost place in the world with a permanent population.

Research and tourism have become important supplementary industries, featuring among others the University Centre in Svalbard and the Svalbard Global Seed Vault. No roads connect the settlements; insteadsnowmobiles, aircraft and boats serve inter-community transport.

The archipelago features an Arctic climate, although with significantly higher temperatures than other areas at the same latitude. The flora takes advantage of the long period of midnight sun to compensate for the polar night. Svalbard is a breeding ground for many seabirds, and also featurespolar bears, reindeer, and marine mammals. Seven national parks and twenty-three nature reserves cover two-thirds of the archipelago, protecting the largely untouched, yet fragile, natural environment. Sixty percent of the archipelago is glacier, and the islands feature many mountains and fiords.

(Thank you, Wikipedia)

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