Back in the field

PictureOslo airport, first thing I saw through departures! Well, when I left last summer, I wrote that I didn’t know if I would be coming back to Svalbard, I really didn’t. It seems that the conviction and numbers of people that told me to come back in winter/spring, combined with some diligent budgeting (and understanding funders) and my own curiosity has led me back and I find myself here again at 78N, and at the end of a cold snap.


It’s -18C today, and I’m very grateful the wind is not up to much, but the effective temperature is, apparently -27 in any case. Which, is surprisingly do-able, so long as you keep moving. Not hugely conducive for taking a lots of photos, but I’m slowly learning to figure out the light settings (thanks for the camera loan Justa!).

The light at the moment is fascinating. It’s quite different seeing this place in the dark for the first time: the snow and lights make for a different kind of pretty. It’s no longer totally dark here all the time, in the middle of the day it can get almost light, hard to describe really, but the street lights aren’t needed and the snow makes it quite bright. In a small break in the clouds i spotted some fairly light sky at about noon today. Officially the light returns on Monday and the sun returns 6th March, but I guess it’s quite tricky to put a date on something with so many different phases, qualities and colours.

So, I’ll try and post some more daily (there abouts) snippets and photos over the next couple of weeks. I’m set to witness the return of the light proper and the beginnings of the main tourist season while I’m here, stay tuned 🙂

3 thoughts on “Back in the field

  1. Fascinating light! Lovely pics, and I’ll look forward to more, as long as you don’t freeze. I wonder if there’s much noticeable difference between say, -10C or -20C? I mean cold is cold, right? I bet it’s really special being there right now, enjoy it!

    1. Thanks Alyson. I’ll let you know on the temperature, due to get warmer next week. My feeling is that wind makes the big difference, we shall see…

      1. Wind is definitely the important factor, even here a strong wind can make the walk or cycle to work much colder (as well as harder.). Got to go now, out for a meal (sorry!).

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