were many fathoms off it.
"As I said, the summer is short, and that is the only time ships can sail about, and make their way among the ice. Then comes the winter, and terribly long that is; it lasts well-nigh ten months, and for all that time the ship is shut up just as fast as if she was in a dock with the entrance closed by stone. There she lies, housed over, with topgallant-masts struck, and if it was not for the stoves below, which must be kept alight at all hours of the day and night, people would be frozen to death: I have heard, indeed, of a whole ship's company being turned into ice. For many days during the time the sun is below the horizon, and there is one long night; the stars, however, when the sky is clear, shine brightly, and sometimes the Northern lights blaze up and sparkle, and people can see their way over the ice, but it is not pleasant travelling, and one has to wear wonderfully thick clothing, and mits on the hands, and to cover up all but the eyes, nose, and mouth, or a man woul
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