There are blogs where people go to get information on certain subjects. When they have a particular question they ask it in the comment section and usually the blogger - who has an above average knowledge of the subject most of the time - will answer the question. This blog is not such a blog. Actually, it's the exact opposite. I, the blogger, do not know a lot about the Arctic and so I'm hoping people will post comments to clear things up for me. Because I have questions, a lot of questions.
Take for instance the MODIS satellite images Gareth from the Hot Topic blog mentioned in the comment thread of my previous blog post. The Arctic mosaic (a composite of several pictures) offers a stunning view of what is actually going on in the Arctic. But how do you interpret what you see? It's been only this year that I have started to check these images, and particularly the one displaying the Nares Strait.
The extra interest on my part is mainly due to this excellent piece by Patrick Lockerby called The Broken Bridges of Nares (sounds a bit like the title of an exciting fantasy book, doesn't it). Lockerby uses pictures from MODIS to show how and when the Nares Strait ice broke up in previous years and April 2010.
Ice bridge locations, adapted from image by P. Lockerby, source: ice-glaces.ec.gc.ca/
As Lockerby writes:
After the long Arctic Winter, the Nares Polynya should have formed an ice bridge. It hasn't. The Lincoln Sea should have healed its fractures. It hasn't. (...) In 2007 the open Nares Strait discharged about 10% of the total ice loss. (...) There is a potential for ice loss this year far greater than the all-time losses of 2007. The Nares Strait and Lincoln Sea areas should be surveyed as a matter of urgency.
So that's what I've been doing ever since, survey the Nares Strait and Lincoln Sea (though that probably isn't what Lockerby had in mind). And when you click on the MODIS Arctic mosaic where the Nares Strait and Lincoln Sea are, you get a closer view of that region: