With the Seward Peninsula of Alaska to the east, and Chukotskiy Poluostrov of Siberia to the west, the Bering Strait separates the United States and the Russian Federation by only 90 kilometers. It is named for Danish explorer Vitus Bering, who spotted the Alaskan mainland in 1741 while leading an expedition of Russian sailors. This view of the region was captured by MISR's vertical-viewing (nadir) camera on August 18, 2000 during Terra orbit 3562.
The boundary between the US and Russia lies between Big and Little Diomede Islands, which are visible in the middle of the Bering Strait. The Artic Circle, at 66.5 degrees north latitude, runs through the Arctic Ocean in the top part of this image. This circle marks the southernmost latitude for which the Sun does not rise above the horizon on the day of the winter solstice. At the bottom of this image is St. Lawrence Island. Situated in the Bering Sea, it is part of Alaska and home to Yupik Eskimos.