68˚59’N, 33˚08’E. (1 August) Unable to clear customs as we had planned in TIKHAYA BUKTA, we detoured to Murmansk where we also took on 1,900 tons of fuel. Population about 303,754. According to purists, unless you have been to Murmansk, you have not completed the Northeast Passage. So I am glad we had to go there, to pass through customs and immigration as we were leaving Russia and to pick up fuel.
We were in Murmask for two days… On a tour of the city, we saw the LENIN, the first atomic icebreaker, built 1957, worked for 30 years and is now a museum.
While in Murmansk, we visited their museum, the Russian Orthodox Church of our Savior on Waters, the landmark lighthouse, the Kursk Memorial to commemorate the death of 118 sailors who died 12 August 2000 in the Barents Sea. The Memorial was unveiled 26 July 2009.
The most well known monument in Murmansk is the enormous statue, ALYOSHA, honoring the “Defenders off the Soviet Arctic during the Great Patriotic War. It is a monument to Soviet soldiers, sailors and airmen of WWII. The height off the pedestal in 7m (23’), the statue is 35.5m (116’). It is the second tallest statue in Russia, dedicated 19 October 1974.
We took on 1,900 tons of fueling in 7 hours!
End First Leg: 25 days, 4,691 nautical miles.