Sea Ice Cracks Expand to Cover 2/3rd of Thick Ice, Cross North Pole

North Pole Cracks

(Image Source: Canadian Weather Office)

A large, rapidly expanding, series of ring-structure cracks in the Arctic sea ice that began in the Beaufort Sea in February has now expanded to encompass much of the remaining thick ice and to cross the North Pole.

In the upper-center portion of the above image, you can see these crack structures pushing through the remaining thick ice and arcing up through the North Pole itself. These North Pole  vicinity cracks first appeared a couple of days ago. Since that time, they have rapidly expanded to cover much of the remaining thick ice.

These longitudinal cracks have now also become visible on the US Navy sea ice thickness composite here:


(Image source: US Navy)

Note how, in the last few frames, the thick sea ice begins to crack as it lifts northward off Greenland and the Arctic Archipelago. As the latitudinal cracks break the ice, you can begin to see hair-line longitudinal cracks emerge.

So we have an ever-expanding and ongoing crack-up of a large portion of Arctic sea ice. This increased cracking will, likely, make the ice sheet in cracked regions far less resilient to melt once more direct sunlight begins to rain down starting in May and June.

Other areas worth continued observation include two expanding areas of thin ice north of Alaska and Western Canada.

A good number of amateur and professional eyes are currently keeping tabs on the crack-up, so we will continue to post updates as they become available.


Leave a comment


  1. Wow that was unusual. I just wrote an very long comment but after I clicked submit my comment didn’t show up. Grrrr… well I’m not writing all that over again. Anyway, just wanted to say superb blog!|


    • I’m paranoid about such things. I try to remember to copy to notepad before posting. So sorry to see you lost it. But thank you for taking the time in any case. Best to you!


  2. Outstanding post but I was wondering if you could write a litte more on this subject? I’d be very grateful if you could elaborate a little bit further. Thank you!



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