Thursday, July 11, 2019

Arctic Vacation, Somerset Island, Canada: July 11, 2019

Last night wind from the north blew ice toward Somerset Island. Because there was a possibility that four-legged marine predators (polar bears) could be on the ice sheets, we drove to the northern coast of Somerset Island to see what we can see. We were in the group that traveled along the west side of Cunningham Inlet. Another group traveled along the eastern coast of the inlet.

While Cunningham Inlet is ice free quite a bit of ice has built up along Somerset Island's northern coast which is the southern portion of the Northwest Passage.

Sea Algaes attached to a chunk of ice
Polar Bear Skeleton
Alas, the only polar bear we saw was a skeleton found last year and reassembled near the trail. There was also a reconstructed vertebrae section of a bowhead whale.

Glistening Patch of Snow on Hillside

Two very distant seals on the ice
Back at the lodge, the other group told us that they saw one polar bear. They were looking far out on the ice, but the bear was next to the shore. The bear saw them first and ran away. That's when they saw it. It happened so fast they didn't get any photos.

No bears, no whales.

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