Bear Islands Russia (Arctic Russia)
Cruise Port schedule, live map, terminals, news
Arctic - Antarctica
-7 °F / -21 °C
Russia's Bear Islands (officially Medvezhyi Islands) are an archipelago of uninhabited islands located in the East Siberian Sea - at the Kolyma Gulf's western end. The group is a part of Russia's Sakha Republic.
Bear Islands are located approx 100 km (60 mi) to the north of Kolyma River's mouth. The Siberia's coast is approx 35 km (20 mi) to the southwest of the archipelago's largest island (length 15 km / 9 mi). The surrounding sea is fast-ice covered during winter, and pack-ice obstructed in the summer.
All Medvezhyi Islands are breeding sites for polar bears. The islands were first reported in 1710 by Yakov Permyakov (Russian Arctic explorer). During the 1820-1824 Arctic expedition of Ferdinand Petrovich Vrangel (1796-1870, a German explorer) to the East Siberian Sea and the Chukchi Sea, the Chetyryokhstolbovoy Island was mapped. Another report was made during the world's first-ever Northeast Passage transit in 1878 (September) done by Adolf Erik Nordenskiold (1832-1901, a Finnish-Swedish baron) who sailed close to the archipelago with his steamship named "Vega".
The Medvezhyi Islands group was extensively explored during the 1910-1915 Arctic Ocean Hydrographic Expedition.