- Project Runeberg -  Through Siberia - the land of the future /
66

(1914) [MARC] Author: Fridtjof Nansen Translator: Arthur G. Chater - Tema: Russia
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THROUGH SIBERIA
Sea, as the distances are not very great ; we should
then have to suppose that they had managed to meet
with human beings in the winter of 1912, or at the
latest during the following spring or summer. But as
nothing has been heard of them, it is to be feared that
a disaster has occurred.
The only alternative would be that the expedition
found open water, and so went on without calling for
the coal at Dickson Harbour, which, of course, may have
been closed by ice ; but this does not seem very likely,
and in any case they must have wintered somewhere
before reaching Cape Chelyuskin, as otherwise they
ought to have met the two ice-breakers, Taimyr and
Vaigach, under Vilkitsky, which went along the coast
westward from Bering Strait this year (1913). There
is still a possibility that the Sviataya Anna may be
drifting in the ice on the north in the Arctic Ocean,
and that her crew may still be alive there, but there is
no great chance of that either.
As regards Rusånov, it is less certain that he had
any intention of making for Dickson Harbour in par
ticular; but in any case he can hardly have reached
the east side of the Kara Sea, as nothing has been heard
of him in any quarter.
He is rather to be looked for on the coast of Novaya
Zemlya. Not on any part of the west coast, however,
since Sedov’s expedition does not seem to have come
upon any trace of him. More probably, then, he
wintered on the east coast, but in that case it is strange
that we have not yet heard anything of him or his crew.
It seems to me, therefore, that things have an ugly
look for this expedition as well as the other. Of course
there is here again the possibility that the ship was
shut in the ice, and has drifted north with it ; and
what may then have happened is not easy to say. It
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