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> Returning to Longyearbyen with a special stop
post Aug 17 2005, 07:46 AM
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TREC Teacher

Group: TREC Team
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Joined: 27-April 05
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Tues Aug 16

We left our field station today by boat for the trip back to Longyearbyen. Isfjord radio is a special place and I was sad to leave. But as we left the pier, I found out we would be visiting Barentsburg, a Russian coal mining settlement on Svalbard. Barentsburg was very different than any other settlement I have visited. It still had statues of Lenin up, the people spoke Russian, they had greenhouses that grew much of their food and they raised pigs. There were large cement soviet style apartment complexes and piles of coal everywhere. About 800 people live in the settlement, mostly male, and they have a two year contract. There is a main building where people eat their meals and one hotel. The coal mine is open 24 hours and the workers work 8 hours shifts. It was a very interesting place to visit and the pictures might help show how special it was.

After Barentsburg, our boat made its way back to Longyearbyen, where we will be for the next couple days wrapping up the field season. Our base will be at UNIS, the University Centre in Svalbard. The students in our group will be presenting preliminary finding and we will be putting our field equipment back in storage. Early Friday morning, we will be coming back to the States.
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All of our field gear on boat.

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Brian putting finishing touches on presentation on boat

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Barentsburg Pier

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Billboard in town

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Sign outside the museum

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Apartments houses in Barentsburg
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