The Vacant Volcano of Peter I Øy
Peter I Øy is an extinct volcano located in the Bellingshausen Sea, about 450 km (280 miles) from the Antarctic continent, and measures 19 by 11 km (12 by 7 miles). The top of the volcano, Lars Christensentoppen, is 1,640 meters high (5,380 feet). Peter I Øy is claimed by Norway, and as of 2005 it is estimated that only 600 people have ever set foot on the island.
Peter I Øy’s Slavic Past
The island was discovered in 1821 by Russian explorer Fabian von Bellingshausen and was named in honour of Tsar Peter I of Russia. More than a century later, in 1931, Norway claimed the island. An automatic meteorological station was installed in 1987.
Visiting Peter I Øy
We intend to visit Peter I Island on our Ross Sea voyages, using helicopters to maximize the chances of a successful landing. There are no wildlife colonies found on the island, but there is a breeding area for southern fulmars and Arctic terns. Adélie penguins, chinstrap penguins, and numerous seal have also been reported there.