North Pole Then and Now

Seadragon (SSN-584), foreground, and her sister Skate (SSN-578) during a rendezvous at the North Pole in August 1962

Note the open water at the pole.

By contrast, the photo below was taken near the North Pole on August 14, 2010.

Now, here is the kicker. The photo below was taken at the pole, in March, 1959.

Do you still believe that the Arctic is melting down?

About stevengoddard

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11 Responses to North Pole Then and Now

  1. bbttxu says:

    My boss shared with me this quote the other day—”the plural of anecdote is not information.”

    I wonder how your view of Arctic sea ice thickness matches with the data that was recorded by the US Navy (as well British) over several decades at multiple locations under the polar ice cap?

    In spite of golden photo opportunities, the declassified data show a decreasing trend of polar sea ice thickness across the region. Thoughts?

    [Reply : The 1970s had a lot of Arctic ice (remember the ice age scare of the 1970s?) It would be interesting to see the raw data, and break the 1958-1976 data up into smaller time periods.],9171,944914,00.html

    Science: Another Ice Age?
    Monday, Jun. 24, 1974

    Science News : March 1, 1975
    The Ice Age Cometh

  2. noiv says:

    Thanks for posting the famous submarine at NP pictures. However, this year there are several hundred places submarines could rendezvous within the ice. Well, except NP, of course.

  3. baffled24 says:

    In March 1959, Skate made another extensive trip under the polar ice cap – this time in winter. During this trip, she traveled 11,495 miles, 11,220 of which were submerged and more than 3000 under the polar ice cap. She broke through the polar ice to surface on 10 occasions. Slightly less than five years after her commissioning Skate entered the yards to receive her first refueling and overhaul. She had steamed 120,862 miles, of which 105,683 were submerged, on her first core.

    The ice in the arctic is mobile and a submarine will look for thin ice above to breal through. Even at the North Pole ice can be thin any year.

  4. baffled24 says:

    Re photo 14 August 2010, I imagine that today’s equivalent of the SSN-578 could have surfaced there, changing the scenery appreciably.

  5. bbttxu says:

    Being born in the ’70’s, I don’t remember it, but I’ve read about the depiction in popular culture. Along that line of thought, I can’t wait to hear in a couple years how the “scientists” got 2012 wrong. We digress, your post is not about pop culture…

    Here are some papers I managed to google up on changes in sea-ice thinning. You and your readers may enjoy. -bbt

    Thinning of the Arctic sea-ice cover

    Click to access Rothrock%201999%20-%20Thinning%20of%20Arctic%20Sea-Ice%20Cover.pdf

    Decline in Arctic sea ice thickness from submarine and ICESat records: 1958–2008

    Click to access Kwok.2009.GRL.pdf

    Raw data available here

    [Reply : Thanks! Very helpful links]

  6. steven Mosher says:

    Actually Steven The date on the second photo is “unknown”

    [Reply : Actually it is “Skate (SSN-578), surfaced at the North Pole, 17 March 1959.” ]

    • Jon P says:

      Here is a source that confirms the Skate was there on March 17, 1959.

      “On 17 March, she surfaced at the North Pole to commit the ashes of the famed explorer Sir Hubert Wilkins to the Arctic waste. When the submarine returned to port, she was awarded a bronze star in lieu of a second Navy Unit Commendation for demonstrating “… for the first time the ability of submarines to operate in and under the Arctic ice in the dead of winter . . .”

      See Steven M. and no one told you to stop embarrassing yourself 😉

  7. PhilJourdan says:

    There is a reason that the alarmist camp does not include a lot of old submariners.

    They were there.

  8. Steven Mosher,

    I know that you didn’t understand what I was doing with my Arctic posts on WUWT.

    But I knew exactly what I was doing, and it is time for you to admit that to yourself and stop running around all over the blogosphere bashing me.


  9. Bob says:

    As a former submariner with some experience under the arctic ice in a class of submaring without through the ice surfacing capabilities, I would like to make just one point.

    We paint over the numbers on submarines before we head to sea, the Skate photo is a fake.

    [Reply : That darn Navy. Faking every single one of their submarine pictures. LOL ]

  10. joe says:

    Your ‘kicker’ photo was taken in August at an unspecified location according to the link you yourself supplied.

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