We awoke this morning to the noise of the ship cutting through pack ice. We had been travelling south through the sea ice from Nordaustlandet and we were now going around Edgeøya, towards Russebukta in Storfjorden. The plan for the morning was to make landing here, but ‘uncertainty’ is a concept Expedition Leader Mike emphasized because it is inherent when travelling in the Arctic. The landing site at Russebukta happened to be blocked by ice so we continued along the shoreline until finding a beach free of ice. A kilometer from the beach were over a hundred reindeer grazing in the tundra.

The expedition team went ashore for scouting, but a bear was eventually spotted, and operations had to be adjusted. We continued towards the south and enjoyed a presentation by our naturalist, Doug, about the birds of Svalbard.

In the afternoon, we stopped along the beautiful mountains of Kvalpyntfjellet where some of our guests went kayaking and others went on a Zodiac cruise. When finished, they also had the opportunity to go for a polar plunge. Twenty brave ones dared to dive into the freezing cold water.