Aug 31, 2018 - National Geographic Explorer
This morning National Geographic Explorer entered the Fram Fjord, on the southeastern part of Ellesmere Island. We found ourselves in the wake of Otto Sverdrup, a prominent Norwegian Polar explorer. During the years 1898 to 1902 he was captain and expedition leader on an expedition to explore a large portion of the Queen Elisabeth Islands. With a crew of 16 he let the expedition ship Fram freeze into the ice during the first wintering of the expedition, and the name Fram Fjord is only one of several Norwegian place names in this part of the Canadian Arctic. Captain Sverdrup requested the Norwegian government claim sovereignty over the area that his team had surveyed. The Norwegian government, however did not provide the support that Sverdrup hoped for, and the Canadian government purchased this enormous area from him for 35,000 USD!
Hiking or Zodiac cruising were the options during our morning in the Fram Fjord. After lunch, we sailed towards the southeastern tip of Ellesmere Island, and a couple of presentations were given by expedition staffers James Hyde and Karen Copeland. James talked about the whimsical world of pinnipeds while Karen introduced us to plants in the Polar desert. The evening was calm and sunny. We now sail northwards and see how far the ice allows us to go.
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