Ice Ahoy!

Apr. 22nd, 2012 06:08 pm
starseverywhere: (destination awesome)
[personal profile] starseverywhere
For many, many years now I have been obsessed with the polar regions - with the endless nights and the endless days, with the aurora, with bears and penguins and birds nesting endlessly on cliffs.

I've looked longingly at photos others have taken and sat in front of nature documentaries with my heart aching at the beauty of it all.

Four years ago I went to Iceland for the first time and was immediately smitten. In January I made it back and had the most wonderful time (with wonderful people) and since then I have not been able to stop thinking about landscapes of snow and ice.

I've found myself constantly refreshing spaceweather and the aurora forecasts, treating frozen planet like it was porn and visiting polar trip travel agencies in an almost masochistic fashion.

Last week I decided that I have wanted this long enough and I booked a trip. In 82 days I am leaving to travel up to Longyearbyen, Spitsbergen in the Svalbard archipelago where I will board an ice-reinforced scientific research vessel and cruise around the islands for a little over a week. The cost is, quite frankly, ridiculous and I that's even though I managed to get a very good deal on flights and am in a quad-share cabin. I don't care if I have to live off noodles for the rest of the year/decade, I am so excited to be doing this.

Now, I just have to take a step back and stop researching, buying probably unnecessary equipment and fretting over weather patterns, not being able to see polar bears, dropping my camera overboard etc. My biggest concern at the moment (and this says so much about me) is that I've always been terrible at sleeping in moving vehicles of whatever sort because I'm petrified that I'll miss something awesome out of the window while I sleep. It's why I have to have a window seat on planes or I get all antsy and stressed and why 6 weeks travelling around Australia on greyhound buses led to some pretty impressive sleep deprivation. I'm really not sure how I'll cope on a ship in the most spectacular location imaginable where the sun never sets and the light at night is the best for photography. You know what though, it's a problem I couldn't be more thrilled to have to work out a solution to because it means that I'm going to be at 80degrees north and only 500 miles from the north pole.

Ice Ahoy!
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