Warm Norwegian weather caused an icebound ship and tourists to disappear temporarily much to the surprise of their guide, reports say.
Vessel the “Noordlicht”, built in 1910, has lain frozen in Tempelfjorden off the island of Svalbard in the Arctic since approximately 2004 and is used as a tourist attraction.
The unfortunate tourists in question had travelled to the boat with guides by dog sled. They were due to continue their experience according to schedule the following day.
However, upon awaking the next morning, Basecamp Spitsbergen guide Steinar Rorgermoen says one of his colleagues who had slept ashore discovered his party had gone.
“There were westerly winds and lots of waves earlier in April, which broke up the sea ice and caused the boat to sail out into open waters. The guide couldn’t believe his own eyes, so he got back into his sleeping bag to get up once more as he wondered if he’d been hallucinating,” Mr Rorgermoen told NRK.
Discovering the Noordlicht had ended up in Longyearbyen following its impromptu voyage the tourists were then collected at the quayside, and driven back to where they were the day before by snowmobile.
The Noordlicht has now been given its own ‘parking space’ that has been made in the ice to stop it happening again.
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