Hunting was the major commercial activity in Northern Norway & the Polar Museum started out with some very well done but rather sad (from our very sheltered and PETA-influenced point of view).
...an Arctic Fox couple, one of whom is about to be stoned to death and one of whom is about to be traumatized & bereaved for life
...a reindeer being slaughtered
...baby seals about to be bludgeoned to death
No one was trying to kill this seal at the moment, though I imagine they would shoot it with a rifle. I was trying to make kk look like she was kissing the seal, but she started laughing so it didn't really work out for us.
Tromsø has been the last jumping off point for many Arctic expeditions. Someone tried to fly a hot air balloon over the North Pole (he didn't make it).
A model of the Latham 47, the plane that Roald Amundsen disappeared in.Then there was a polar bear skin on the floor.
The amount of fur in this museum was staggering.
Kirsten was actually afraid in this photo because they had audio of a softly growling bear. I had to coax her into getting even this close to the bear. True story.
So I had known about Roald Amundsen & his expeditions to the North & South poles & how Norwegians were so proud of him. Who I didn't know about until today was Fridtjof Nansen
maybe because his name is so much harder to pronounce. Nansen is my new hero. He attempted the North Pole in 1893... didn't make it BUT he had an amazing expedition. It was three years before they returned (that was part of the plan) and all the crew members survived & the boat "Fram" survived and was, in fact, used by Amundsen on his expedition to the South Pole. I really need to read his book, Farthest North
. Here's an unofficial summary...
Nansen develops his polar drift theory, that a boat stuck in the drift ice will cross over the pole region (and when it gets close enough you dog sled/ski over to the pole). Outfitted an expedition. Developed a boat able to resist the crushing pressure of the sea ice. Once Fram (the boat) was stuck in the ice, they set up shop. The had a windmill to provide electricity for lighting & Nansen had all kinds of scientific devices to gather data (Nansen was a zoologist, Oceonographer & also kick started the fields of neurology & fluid dynamics). Nansen expected the journey to take three years, so he outfitted for five and also had workshops so his crew could work while stuck in the ice.
Someways into it he realized his theory was wrong and that the ship wasn't going to pass through to Alaska area. So Nansen asked Hjalmer Johansen to join him in SKIING to the north pole (with dog teams). They took 100days of rations & 30days worth for the dogs. At the 50th day in they turned back. Broke a watch. The dogs died off. Nansen fell through the ice. Johansen almost got eaten by a Polar bear. Nansen had to SWIM after their kayaks when they almost floated away. They built a stone hut to overwinter for NINE months. Stayed friends. Made their way all the way to Franz Josef Land and found an English research camp in the spring. Amazing. I'll stop babbling now!