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Snow Seeking in Svalbard Journey to the World's Most Northerly Commercial Airport

Snow Seeking in Svalbard Journey to the World's Most Northerly Commercial Airport

Old Aug 7, 19, 11:39 am
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Originally Posted by cockpitvisit View Post
Great report, I enjoying reading and watching your photos very much - felt like I was there (and without being cold!)

Quite shocking it was that cold basically in the middle of the ocean - I always thought the ocean was supposed to regulate the weather (especially since it wasn't frozen, as evidenced by your pics).

I am curious, is it scary to drive a snowmobile, in case there are some rocks hidden under the snow etc.? Would make for a nasty accident if hit at 80kph... And did anyone of your group have any accident while driving?
Thanks cockpitvisit! Even though the ocean might have a cooling effect to a certain extent, it also means that the coastal parts of the island are highly vulnerable to freezing cold winds. It's amazing what difference a stone throw might make if you compare temperatures down by the water and a few feet further inland.

To answer your question, I personally didn't find driving a snow mobile scary. If there are imho more dangerous parts it are the twisty roads going uphill which were the most tricky. You can only hit speeds of 80kph when you have flat land and if you hit a small rock (which can happen) you feel it in a way not dissimilar to sitting in a 2WD car or so. You know you hit something, but it really has zero consequences. Of course, the guide driving all the time up front did warn us at times when we would hit an area where more boulders are located (and of bigger size) which could do damage to the snowmobile. In these areas there is no way we would reach speeds of 80kph as we would of course slow down to more sensible speeds. I cannot really imagine even the clumsiest of drivers having an accident at 80kph on flat terrain - that is by far the easiest part of driving! (just as driving on a highway is far more easy and less challenging than dense city traffic)
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