Expedition Greenland – A view from above.
Greenland had enthralled me to a point until recently. Now it’s blown my mind.
Having been lucky enough in the last few weeks to enjoy several helicopter flights over some of our homebase mountains in Liverpool Land, the scale of Greenland’s wild mountain ranges was obvious; huge mountains cut by glaciers in a pattern that stretched to the horizon – vast and unexplored.
Boarding a twin otter and landing on a glacier close to the ice cap and next to the highest mountain in Greenland – this scale was suddenly dwarfed. Greenland is a pristine wilderness beyond comparison or scale; corrugated contours of delicate peaks spiral around each other as far as the eye can see, bursting into perfect blue sky as spines of jagged rock. Glaciers tear through rock and mountain in every direction, leaving a crevassed wilderness that could swallow villages. Ice and snow cling to every piece of exposed mountain, defying gravity.
The landscape is vast and ferocious yet seems a scene of frozen tranquillity. We flew two hours from Constable Point and landed on the glacier which engulfs the base of Gunnbjorn Fjeld – Greenland’s highest peak. Surrounding peaks are 2000m high but never see the sun – buried beneath the enormous icecap and glaciers.
Our twin otter is equipped with it’s own set of retractable skis, meaning it can land on snow or a normal gravel and bitumen runway. As we touch down on the glacier a burst or powder snow explodes around the skis as the plane scores its first tracks of the season! We are the first visitors to this incredibly remote location this year.
Only a handful of people visit this area – even fewer ascend the surrounding peaks – these untouched hours are a privilege I won’t forget.