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the Degree Confluence Project
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Norway : Nordland

8.0 km (5.0 miles) ESE of Åse, Andøya (Island), Vesterålen, Nordland, Norway
Approx. altitude: 0 m (0 ft)
([?] maps: Google MapQuest Multimap world confnav)
Antipode: 69°S 164°W

Accuracy: 79 m (259 ft)
Click on any of the images for the full-sized picture.

#2: Imram, our sailboat. #3: The onboard GPS on the confluence #4: The board logbook #5: View east from the confluence #6: View south from the confluence #7: View west from the confluence #8: Sailing north under spinnaker

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  69°N 16°E  

#1: View north from the confluence and general view

(visited by Salvatore Mele, Imram and Peter Gallinelli)

28-Jul-2004 -- Imram is a prototype of a 12.50m aluminum sailboat, the Integral which is designed to sail in arctic waters (Picture #2). After a successful travel from France to Iceland and Greenland in 2003, the 2004 sailing program was focussed to reach and explore remote Spitzberg islands, the closest you can get to the north pole on liquid water, that means without an icebreaker.

This was a unique confluence-visiting chance, since so far north many of those magic round-numbers spots sit close to each other. In addition, a sailboat gives access to the most difficult points to visit, which at these latitudes are sometimes the only one can think of visiting at all.

A crew change and last arrangements before traversing the Barents sea brought us to the North of Norway, close to a few not-yet-visited confluences, which were readily added to the expedition plan.

On July 28, 2004, after having spent a short night moored to a rotten old jetty in remote Rysøysund, and having profited of a small local shop for fresh yoghurt and bread, mooring lines were cast off and we started sailing north with a nice southerly breeze of 3 to 4 Bf. A gorgeous "Mediterranean" weather had blessed the Lofoten islands for a few days, and the mood on board was great. Careful route calculation brought us very close to the confluence point, in the middle of a wonderfully scenic fjord. It was clear that with the wind and some of the waves which had formed on the sea, there was no way to stop the 11 tons of fully loaded boat (mind, we had to survive a month in the arctic, possibly more in case something went very wrong) right on the magic spot, nor to keep her nicely in place while taking the due pictures. As the scriba had already done for 43N 10E, the best strategy was to first reach a the round-number parallel, and then head north till the meridian crossing.

This we did, with some careful last minute correction to account for the drift due to the wind and the waves and at 1029 UTC, 69N 16E was consciously visited for the first time: a nice taste of success for our future plans of visiting some confluences around 79N and 80N. The ritual GPS picture was taken (Picture #3) and the fact was duly entered in the onboard logbook (Picture #4).

North of us (Picture #1) we could see the mouth of the fjord, and the rest of our route. To the East (Picture #5), South (Picture #6) and West (Picture #7) the fascinating coastline of the Vesterålen islands.

Once out of the fjord, the 100 square meters of Imram's spinnaker were hoisted (Picture #8), and we aimed North, sailing faster toward the rest of our adventures (and confluences).


 All pictures
#1: View north from the confluence and general view
#2: Imram, our sailboat.
#3: The onboard GPS on the confluence
#4: The board logbook
#5: View east from the confluence
#6: View south from the confluence
#7: View west from the confluence
#8: Sailing north under spinnaker
ALL: All pictures on one page (broadband access recommended)
  Notes
In the Andfjorden, but with a good view of land.