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Report - Pyramiden, Svalbard - May 2013

Discussion in 'European and International Sites' started by 750XL, Feb 15, 2014.

  1. 750XL

    750XL 28DL Full Member
    28DL Full Member

    Jan 10, 2012
    Likes Received:
    Firstly, I'm not an Urbex'er myself (although I'm an avid reader of this site) but thought this report may be of interest to some people here. Please forgive the image quality, all taken on point and shoot or iPhone.

    Last year I was lucky enough to embark on a trip of a lifetime to Svalbard, a small group of islands located high in the Arctic Circle and home to the worlds most northerly town, Longyearbyen, located at 78 degrees north.

    Location of Svalbard

    During our stay in Longyearbyen we planned to visit Pyramiden, an abandoned Russian mining village, bit of info here:

    Pyramiden (meaning "the pyramid" in most Scandinavian languages; called Пирамида, Piramida, in Russian) is a Russian settlement and coal mining community on the archipelago of Svalbard, Norway. Founded by Sweden in 1910 and sold to the Soviet Union in 1927, Pyramiden was closed in 1998 and has since remained largely abandoned with most of its infrastructure and buildings still in place.

    The only way to reach Pyramiden is by snowmobile, roughly a 6-7 hour ride from Longyearbyen through the vast open glaciers, valleys, mountains and frozen fjords of Svalbard, certainly not easy! The threat of polar bears is very real on Svalbard, there's more of them there than humans, so a rifle is required at all times outside the boundary of Longyearbyen. Without further ado, he's there pics

    The unique stucture on the main path into Pyramiden

    Old fuel tanks?

    Main area at the foot of the old coal mine

    Abandoned crane and buildings

    The old community centre, home to swimming pool, gym, theatre etc

    The old living quarters for the mining staff, and families

    View from the community centre into the main part of the village

    Foot of the mine entrance

    Inside the old swimming baths

    Wooden walkways connecting various buildings to the mine entrance

    Inside the old swimming baths

    That's all I'm afraid, all other pictures are of even worse quality :D

    Pyramiden is a fascinating yet highly depressing place, I can't imagine ever living there being so remote in the vast and harsh wilderness of Svalbard. I'd highly recommend a trip to Svalbard and specifically Pyramiden for those of you who love exploring. I only spent about an hour in Pyramiden, although I wish we had taken a tent (and a few dogs to guard against the bears) so we could've explored the town a bit more during our trip there given the 24/7 sunlight.

    Thanks for reading and apologies if I've broken any forum rules.

    PS - here's the reason you need a rifle on Svalbard! Pictured on our return to Longyearbyen



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