Our client Elspeth Hamilton wanted to go to Nordhauslandet last year, following in the steps of her father who was on an Oxford University expedition there in 1935-6. Arcturus arranged the trip for her on Antarctic Dream and the ship planned to try and do a special landing where his base had been. Sadly on the day it wasn’t possible, but instead, Elspeth read extracts from her father’s journals to her fellow passengers to mark the occasion. Here is an excerpt of her note to us:
“I loved the holiday and all your arrangements were spot on! The dog-sledging on my first day was such fun and a great introduction to the whole experience. At the dog-pound there was a fine example of a trapper’s hut and also bear and fox-traps – all of which my Dad often made mention of in his journals – so that set the scene. The ‘Antarctic Dream’ was ideal – the cabins comfy, the food good and the guides very professional, knowledgeable and friendly. We had lots of trips ashore on the zodiacs (polar bears permitting) but didn’t manage it where my dad was mainly based. The best landing was on the south coast of Nordhauslandet, on to such a beautiful stony beach and we walked up the side of a glacier to the ice-cap – that was really special.
I did give my talk – on the last day, and it went down well. Probably about 30 people came. I’d made a slideshow of some of Dad’s tiny black and white photos and they showed up really well on the big screen. I read the entry in his journal covering the voyage in a sealer from Tromsø to Nordhauslandet, and that drew a huge comparison to our experience on the AD! My talk was given on August 7th and I read out his entry for that date 75 years ago – this was when they had made a last ditch attempt to finish the mapping of the island, and on that very day they completed the task – just a week before the boat was arriving to take them all back to England. It was all quite emotive actually. Not a dry eye in the house!”
Elspeth Hamilton, April 2012
Around Spitsbergen and Basecamp Isfjord Radio
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