FRANZ JOSEF LAND - CAPE TEGETTHOFF - NEGRI FJORD
(Zemlya Frantsa-Iosifa) - (29 July) Located well above the Arctic Circle, between 70 73˚- 81 93˚N and 44˚0 - 65.50˚E, only 10 degrees from the North Pole. is a Russian archipelago, inhabited only by military personnel, located in the Arctic Ocean, Barents Sea, Kara Sea and constituting the northernmost part of Arkhangelsk Oblast. It consists of 192 islands, which cover an area of 16,134 square km (6,229 sq mi), stretching 375 km (233 mi) from east to west and 234 km (145 mi) from north to south.
Eighty-five percent of the archipelago is glaciated. The islands have been a nature sanctuary since 1994 and became part of the Russian Arctic National Park in 2012.
Russia in 2009 declared the High Arctic archipelago Franz Josef Land, including a former nature reserve in the same area as well as the Northern part of Novaya Zemlya, as "Russian Arctic National Park". Its total area is 14,260 km2, including 6,320 km2 on the land and 7,940 km2 of the Arctic Ocean, which makes it the third largest national park in Russia and the largest marine protected area in the Arctic.
CAPE TEGETTHOFF - 5:00AM for our first excursion, our introduction to Franz Josef Land, the iconic images of CAPE TEGETTHOFF. It is a stunning place consisting of massive effusive rocks made up of basaltic sheets separated by volcanic ashes and tuffs, mixed with terrigenous rocks with layers of coal. This area was a highlight in Franz Josef Land.
NEGRI FJORD - We had helicopter rides over the glacier. Rivulets running through it made us aware of Global Warming. After our rides, we had a BBQ lunch on the bow. I thought it was crazy, that we would freeze. But it was wonderful! Very hot soup, all kinds of great grilled food, lamb chops, cray fish, sausages, pork, steaks, corn on the cob, salads, baked apples with creme anglaise for dessert. We enjoyed these BBQs at the end of each of the four legs of the expedition.