Spitsbergen Explorer - photography special June


Is there anybody out there who is booked on this as well? Very excited and can't wait to go - especially after to going to one of Paul Goldstein's presentations.




I did this trip last year and have booked again for this with a friend from work. I'm looking forward to many hours crouching in a zodiac, hopefully in the presence of bears and cubs.


Husband (John) and I (Carol)  are going on the trip and really looking forward to it. John's the keener/better photographer - I'm just a point and shoot!  We're flying to Oslo and overnighting there. Anyone else doing that too?

Looking forward to this - though finding it difficult to think about warm clothes in all this glorious weather! Can't quite work out how many layers we'll need. Any hints from those who've done the trip previously welcomed!! Also - are people planning to download photos onto memory sticks/CDs as they recommend or just take loads of memory cards? How did the batteries hold up in the cold weather? Sorry - so many questions! Gilly


According to the latest trip notes, they suggest 6 layers - am not sure I can get that many under my waterproof jacket. We'll look like Michelin men! Still I suppose better to look fat than freeze. Assume we can charge batteries overnight and am intending to take memory cards. We can now say that we're going next month which is great.Look forward to hearing from those who went last year - as Gilly says, their advice would be very welcome.





It's the batteries holding out in the cold that worries me - my normal ploy is to hide the camera under an armpit, but my new camera is too big & we'll be wearing too many layers for this to be practical. I echo Gilly & Carol's plea for advice! I thought downloading onto memory sticks was a good idea. Haven't seen the trip notes saying 6 layers - perhaps it depends on the parka. We are overnighting in Oslo too.


Did this trip last year and the memories are still fresh as it was an amazing experience.

Re numbers of layers. Depends on how susceptible you are to the cold, you can be out for a long time! Zodiac trips were planned to last about 2 hours, but then the presence of lots of Bears takes your mind off the time and all of a sudden 4 have passed. I think the longest we did was 5 hours, but there was the option of leaving before. The coats they give you work well, as they have a fleece inside. If they are combined with a thermal under layer and then another fleece type top, you should be ok, as I said depending on how you get on with the cold. Good warm socks are essential, as there is nothing worse than cold feet and as you will be wearing Wellingtons when in the Zodiac, they will probably be the first thing to get cold.

Re Batteries I took a number with me and did not have much problem, they lasted ok in my DSLR. It is always good to keep them charged up, which I got into the habit of doing each time we came aboard.

Re Memory cards. If you have the luxury of being able to take a computer and an external hard drive then I would. I got into the habit of every time I went back aboard, I downloaded each card; A) it meant you had more available next time you went out and B) they were safe in case there were problems with the card. The added bonus is that you can review your exploits in the bar later in the evening.

I hope you have as good a trip as we did.

Thanks for the info. I thought I had read that you could download photos onto a CD on the boat's computer. Don't want to take mine. Do you remember if that's possible?

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