Two ships trying to break through ice to resupply ice-bound Nome, Alaska, are nearly there after a 10-day journey but have paused to identify the safest path into harbor, a U.S. Coast Guard spokeswoman said Friday.
The U.S. Coast Guard's only operating Arctic icebreaker, the Cutter Healy, and the Russian fuel tanker Renda were in the Bering Sea about eight nautical miles from Nome on Friday morning, Coast Guard Lt. Veronica Colbath told ‚ÄúCNN Newsroom.‚ÄĚ
The Healy will have broken through nearly 300 miles of ice for the Renda, which is transporting 1.3 million gallons of fuel for Nome on a journey that began last week from southern Alaska‚Äôs Aleutian Islands. The ships‚Äô leaders and an ice expert are discussing ‚Äúthe best way to proceed‚ÄĚ to Nome on northwestern Alaska‚Äôs coast, Colbath said.
‚ÄúWe have (had) ‚Ä¶ ice and weather challenges on this 300-mile journey, so we will not be rushing into the harbor of Nome until we have identified the best course of action to navigate in,‚ÄĚ Colbath said.
He laughs, but when it comes time for ‚Äúdown time,‚ÄĚ it‚Äôs music that calms his mind.
‚ÄúI am very careful who rents space in my head,‚ÄĚ he tells me as I ask whether all the criticism over this oil disaster in the Gulf¬† gets to him.