Eskimo Bay

Saturday 2015-09-12 morning

Everyone is still in awe about last night's sunset.  The sky and water looked like they were on fire!

This morning we will travel up Nordvest Fjord toward the glacier that is calving these spectacular icebergs that we have been seeing.  Wet teams will have a chance to snorkel with the icebergs and dry teams will go for a zodiac cruise.  We will relocate a short distance during lunch to Eskimobukta (bukta means "bay") for a landing to see a waterfall and go for a hike.  We hope to see our first muskoxen and arctic hare of the trip!

Eskimobukta: 71°40’35”N, 27°15’18”W

Greenland excitement

Friday 2015-09-11 morning

We have arrived in Greenland and have entered the largest fjord in the world named Scoresbysund.  We expect to see some large icebergs, many small islands, some glaciers, and hope to be fully immersed in it by scuba diving, snorkeling, and zodiac cruising this afternoon.  It is 3 degrees Celcius outside this morning and it is still foggy – although, not as foggy as during our crossing of the Atlantic.  Everyone is excited to get outside with their cameras in hand after two and half days of travel.

Saturday Night with David Doubilet & Jen Hayes

Saturday 2015-09-12 evening

After too many days with too little movement, we finally got the chance to get our blood pumping again. We went on an afternoon hike on an island known for musk oxen and arctic hares, and we saw both, along with some stunning top-down views of the expanse of icebergs in the water below us. One iceberg in particular was extremely impressive. It was absolutely massive and shaped like an amphitheater made entirely of thick, luminous ice. When we drove a zodiac into the main, horseshoe-shaped opening in the center, there was an obvious change in temperature. We could feel the cold air pressing in on us as it escaped from the ice, reminding us just how much colder the temperature outside of the berg could have been.

Our hike this afternoon was extremely enjoyable as well. We saw several musk oxen, large, tough land mammals that resemble water buffalo covered in unimaginable amounts of heavy fur and dread locks. They are surprisingly nimble and fast on the slippery rocks and they didn't spend much time in "shooting range" of our lenses. We also saw stark white arctic hares that remain that color all year long despite the changing scenery.

This evening we were all treated to a great lecture by David Doubilet and Jen Hayes chronicling their experience documenting their travels from their home in upstate New York through the Gulf of St. Lawrence to Newfoundland. Their ultimate goal was to tell the story of the harp seals that live and breed on the ice there and are regularly threatened by the shrinking ice cover induced by climate change. They shared some of the most incredible photos and stories of sturgeon, grey seals, belugas, and harp seals as they made their way north through this frigid water way.

Photo credit: Alex Rose

Alex Rose iceberg

Liquid Ice

Saturday 2015-09-12 afternoon

The head of the Northwest Fjord is something to behold. A majestic glacier and its freshly formed icebergs floating in crystal clear waters. Like Bear Island yesterday, all this area will freeze over within one month and if you were inclined to, you could dogsled from one side to the other. If you were a musk ox, you could change your roaming areas and find new companions - that were recently separated and not accessible to you by the liquid ice! The zodiacs skimmed across the glassy water dodging the baby bergs as we explored the shoreline. The snorkelers, bobbing like corks, examined the underside of the icebergs as if they were checking out the hull of a ship. The divers experienced the gin clear water to find what lurks further down. We heard they captured on film lots of jellies amongst the sculpted creations of the ice.

Photo credit: Pamela Martin