- Project Runeberg -  Through Siberia - the land of the future /
22

(1914) [MARC] Author: Fridtjof Nansen Translator: Arthur G. Chater - Tema: Russia
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THROUGH SIBERIA
22
in the hope of being able to go straight on, to the north
of White Island (Beli Ostrov), and in that firm belief
I turned in.
At about six I was awakened by the engines slowing
down, so there was more ice. They had seen ice to
the north for a long time, but now it was ahead as
well. They thought it was only a line of broken ice
and kept on through it. There was a little fog.
We went farther and farther in. When I went
up on the bridge at nine o’clock there was scattered- ice
on all sides, but it was markedly worn and for the
most part small shreds of ice which would be entirely
thawed awray before many days were past.
On the east and north it was thicker, and it did not
seem advisable to go in that direction any longer ; it
would no doubt be safer to come back into the open
sea again. The sky certainly looked as if there
must be some open water in the ice to the eastward,
as the air was bluish and not white in that direction ;
but there was no open water to be seen from the crow’s
nest, and it looked fairly close far to the eastward.
It was therefore difficult to say how much open water
there might have been, and whether there was enough
for the Correct to get through. But we were still far
from the coast of Yamal, and if there were ice the
whole way, we should run the risk of being stuek fast
and drifting in it for a considerable time. If only
we had had an aeroplane to send to the eastward,
then we might have found out for certain whether
there was a passage and perhaps saved several
days.
But we steered to the south-west at full steam
between the floes so as to get out, and then southward
along the edge in the hope of tinding a way to the south
of the ice and into Yamal.

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