Standing next to an iceberg such as this one can
be quite a scary experience. In addition to being stuck in the
sea ice, this particular berg has been grounded on the sea bed.
It was probably blown towards shore by strong winds or a storm,
and on a high tide. When the wind died down and the tide fell, the
berg was left resting, stuck on the sea bed.
A result of this is that when the tide rises and
falls the sea ice rises and falls with it but the iceberg doesn't.
There are all kinds of creaking and groaning noises made by the
sea ice as it is forced to rub up and down the uneven sides of the
berg with the tide. To add to these unsettling sounds are an assortment
of creaks, groans and bangs made by the iceberg above water as the
sun heats up the surface.
The fear is that either a large lump of ice will
come tumbling down or worse still, the iceberg becomes unstable
and tips up to a new more stable position. This tipping up rarely
happens in the winter, more commonly it takes place in warmer summer
temperatures, but it is not unknown and if it happens can cause
waves and ripples that break up the surface of the sea ice for miles
around. Neither of these events are ones that you want to witness
while standing on the sea ice surrounding the iceberg!
Paul Ward - Pentax equipment,
50mm lens, 35mm film, K64.
This picture may not be copied
or used in any manner without prior written permission.