Polar Challenge Meets Laptev Wall

 

northernsearoute

 

The plan of the Polar Ocean Challenge is to circumnavigate the North Pole counterclockwise in the ship Northabout, starting from Bristol UK, through the Northern Sea Route (Barents to Chukchi), returning through the Northwest Passage (Beaufort to Baffin Bay).  The challenge part is doing it without icebreakers, which is how commercial ships use the NSR.  That is intended to prove the decline of Arctic ice, which is then attributed to global warming, which is due to burning fossil fuels.  (Connecting dots is hard.)

The image from the group’s website shows they are nearby the Vilkitsky Strait waiting for some open water to proceed.  This delay was unforeseen and unwelcome, since refreeezing occurs mid September and the NSR closes in November.  Whether the Northwest Passage opens or not is another matter.

Laptev Gateway
Here is the current Ice chart of the Laptev Sea, looking very much like a wall of ice. By the way, the Vilkitsky strait connecting Kara and Laptev seas is 104 km long. After that, it is all brown stuff..

ru legend

 

Advertisements

14 comments

  1. manicbeancounter · August 4, 2016

    Normally seafarers in that part of the world will hope for calm waters. But to complete the journey the Northbound party will probably be praying for a couple of weeks of violent storms whilst they are in port to clear the way.

    Like

  2. Hifast · August 4, 2016

    Reblogged this on Climate Collections.

    Like

  3. joekano76 · August 4, 2016

    Reblogged this on TheFlippinTruth.

    Like

  4. Caleb · August 6, 2016

    I’m curious about what the recent gale did to the sea-ice. Can you share how you access the Russian Ice-maps?

    Like

    • Ron Clutz · August 6, 2016

      Caleb, thanks for stopping by and commenting. The ice charts come from AARI and are posted weekly at Northern Sea Route Administration (NSRA): http://nsra.ru/en/icecharts/
      The page may open in Russian, but there is an “ENG” which you can click to get the English page.

      As the legend says, the charts are 3-day composites, updated weekly. (I don’t know if ships have access to provisional charts more frequently.). For this image, I wanted a closeup of the Laptev gateway, so took a jpg copy, opened it in Paint, cropped the area of interest, resized and added in the arrows and text.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Caleb · August 6, 2016

        Thanks a million. It will be interesting to see whether the storm increased the ice along the shore or dispersed it.

        If you haven’t done so already, check out Tony Hellers latest post on Actic Sea Ice. I have notoced what he points out. There is ice in both the Chukchi and Beaufort Sea that some “extent” maps miss, though for some reason the DMI “thickness” maps sees it.

        Like

    • Ron Clutz · August 6, 2016

      You’re welcome. For what it’s worth, MASIE showing extent declining rapidly in Beaufort and Chukchi over a four day period start July 31. I has now gained back over 100k km2 in each of those 2 seas the last 2 days.

      Like

      • Caleb · August 6, 2016

        (Part palm fronds) “Vwe-e-e-ry Interestink….but stupid!”

        Like

      • Caleb · August 7, 2016

        On further reflection I am wondering if the sea-ice was ever truly “lost” and then “regained”. In theory I suppose it could have been condensed to 90% concentration and then spread out to 40% concentration, but I also wonder if it merely demonstrates our inability to detect ice when clouds hide it from view. When it is “lost” it is lost from view, and then when the clouds go and skies clear, lo and behold, the ice is “regained”.

        Like

      • Ron Clutz · August 7, 2016

        Caleb, my thinking is similar to yours. The difficulties in measuring anything in the Arctic surely means some of the variability is measurement error. Over time, the mistakes should average out, assuming no bias. I trust MASIE is just trying to get it right each day.
        There is also the matter that each day is a snapshot of drift ice constantly in motion (see my post on the Great Arctic Ice Exchange), so extents can shift up and down in reality.
        MASIE uses 4km grid cells and a 40% threshold, so much more accurate resolution than the satellites by themselves. Even so, each cell is 16k km2, so it only takes 6 cells shifting in the same direction to make a 100k km2 change in a sea`s extent.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Caleb · August 7, 2016

        Thanks for that excellent explanation.

        Like

      • Caleb · August 7, 2016

        By the way, if you haven’t already done so, you should check out the Barrow, Alaska webcam (the animation for the last ten days). After around two weeks of no-ice-in-sight, which surely would create the sense of clear sailing, along the coast, a veritable wall of ice appeared out of the blue and crunched up against the coast for a week, before moving off again. (I would not like to be the captain of a sailboat in such a situation.)

        Like

  5. Pingback: ARCTIC SEA ICE –Northabout Awaits Thaw–(Four Updates) | Sunrise's Swansong
  6. 00Le_Gin00 · August 7, 2016

    I tried posting a link to this article several times in a comment on the Guardian, deleted every time.

    Hope you will be following it’s progress, could be interesting.

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s