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Ice Breaker Yamal in the Arctic Ocean by Ella Derbyshire

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About This Gigapan

Taken by
Ella Derbyshire Ella Derbyshire
Explore score
0.05 Gigapixels
Date added
Aug 08, 2008
Date taken
Jul 27, 2008

Nikon D80's


On our way back from the North Pole we encountered the Yamal, which was on its way to the North Pole. The Yamal has a very distinctive bow design. It is painted to look like a shark's mouth. Watching from the bridge deck of the 50 Years of Victory, we saw the ice breaker at work. The teeth rose and fell relative to the ice as the great red ship ate its way through the ice.

Like our ship, the Yamal is a Russian nuclear icebreaker owned by the Murmansk Shipping Company. Like our ship, the Yamal stays in the Arctic, unable to power itself across the equator because of its design for use in cold arctic seas.

The Yamal has an illustrious past. She was the12th surface ship to reach the North Pole. She has navigated the Northwest Passage and the Northeast Passage. Designed to keep Russia's northernmost shipping lanes clear, the Yamal instead carries tourists as passengers to the Far North .

Two icebreakers meeting in that part of the world presented an interesting opportunity. We settled into the ice that the Yamal had broken on her way north, and the Yamal followed our broken trail of ice toward the North Pole.

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