Friday, September 5, 2014

Wild Alaskan Arctic - The Hostile Land

A VERY SPECIAL LIVE REPORT from Mr. Nirmalya Chakraborty,Editor, Jungle Rhythms. The man who always takes extra miles to reach out to explore the rare wild life throughout the world. Presently, he is fighting the snow blizzard and extreme adverse weather condition at Northern Slope of Alaska in search of elusive Polar Bear. 

The Wild Alaskan Expedition 
"As I sit here locked in my very small warm cabin writing this small note, a strong gust of wind with a blast of snow is constantly bombarding on my glass window. This is definitely a clear signal that an early cold winter is fast approaching this year at the Northern Slope of Alaska in Deadhorse on the Arctic coast.

Dalton Highway
The weather has been very hostile and harsh since we landed in Fairbanks. Still, we risked and drove the entire James Dalton Highway, a distance of 666km in torrential rain, frigid ice and bad unstable gravel road surface. We crossed the alpine cover and had close encounters with Grizzly Bears around Wiseman and then climbed up the treacherous Atigun Pass and passed through the Brooks Range to reach a place away from modern lifestyles into a white snowy world of the bears.
Arctic Ocean

Since, last 3days we are locked here in this little space fighting against all odds to seek key data from the secret lives of the polar bear sub-population in the Beaufort Sea. This is part of a Polar Bear expedition that will track the bears during this very small window of relatively 'good' weather and then try to identify key parameters of impact of Arctic oil explorations and global warming in their lives. The expedition is with a team of member scientists from US, UK and Australia. I am the only Indian member. The key contribution would be of the accounts of the local people who stay harmoniously with the bears. This key data would reveal how they feel about the bears who have adapted over time and any major changes in attitude and movements. 

It has been noted that polar bears are already near a village named Kaktovik gorging themselves on a whale carcass and our team is now well-prepared to document and film them in this hostile weather. Sadly due to gusts of winds of around 53kph and snow shadow constantly of around 3inches, things ahead look very bleak. This weather disturbance is basically due to a cold front that has hit the entire northern Alaska, the charter flights have been cancelled and our expedition is on an uncertain future."

(Report Date: 04.09.2014)

Nirmalya Chakraborty
Editor, Jungle Rhythms

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