Canada’s “Iceberg Alley” got its name for good reason. At this time of year, the town of Ferryland, on the east coast of Newfoundland and Labrador, becomes a mecca for tourists hoping to glimpse icebergs floating by. And this year is already proving to be rather spectacular.
The icebergs break off the Greenland ice shelf and float down the Atlantic Ocean. Every year, hundreds pass by the Newfoundland and Labrador coast, but 2017 has seen more bob past than usual – and many of them record breaking in terms of height. One in the area at the moment is estimated at more than 70 metres tall and 200 metres long.
Iceberg season runs from now until late summer in the northern hemisphere, with the water starting to re-freeze in mid-September. Canada’s International Ice Patrol has indicated that there have already been 648, 10,000 year-old icebergs – in every shape and colour of white and blue – spotted in the trans-Atlantic passage as of this week, compared to 687 by late September last year.
The early arrival has worried some scientists, as experts have attributed the early bergs to strong counter-clockwise winds or possibly to climate change.
They’re a mighty force to be reckoned with – don’t forget that it was these bergs that sank the Titanic, just 650km off the Canadian coast.