Two Danish men unable to pump out water flooding their kayak in Isfjorden, leaving them in the sea with their dry suits, were rescued after triggering their emergency beacon late Sunday night, according to The Governor of Svalbard.
The men, one in his 20s and the other in his 40s, were paddling from Longyearbyen to Pyramiden in a tandem kayak when it began slowly taking on water at Diabasodden, Police Chief Lt. Mathilde Wergeland told Svalbardposten. He said although the weather and seas were generally calm along the route, there can be rough areas where several fjords intersect.
The kayakers set off their emergency beacon at 11:10 p.m. when they ended up in the water. Helicopter rescuers had difficulty spotting the men and it took about two hours before they were lifted aboard the aircraft.
Both men, one of whom was suffering from the cold, were brought to Longyearbyen Hospital where they were treated for a few hours and released.
“Even if you have good equipment, it will be cold to stay so long in the water in Isfjorden,” Wergeland said.
The kayak has not been found and the men are requesting anyone locating it contact officials.