The Arctic waterway of Isfjord
Isfjord is one of the largest fjords in the Arctic and the second longest in the Norwegian archipelago of Svalbard. Part of the fjord is included within a Norwegian national park, and several of Svalbard’s largest settlements are positioned around Isfjord: Longyearbyen, the capital of the archipelago, as well as Barentsburg and Pyramiden, the latter of which is now abandoned.
Isfjord’s discordant whaling history
In the early seventeenth century, Isfjord was a popular location for whaling ships operated by Basque, French, and Dutch whalers. These vessels, however, were eventually driven off by the English, who used Isfjord as a whaling base until the middle of the 1600s.