Thursday, March 15, 2012

It's cold in Ilulissat

As warmer weather creeps over Europe it has been interesting to monitor weather conditions off western Greenland where we are heading for sea kayaking this summer.  For the last two weeks at least it has been bitterly cold, most days the temperature has been well below -20°C, quite a bit colder than it should be in Ilulissat at this time of the year.  This should be having an impact on the quantity and depth of the sea ice.  Yesterdays -25°C equals the record low for the 14th March set in 1997.  In fact 5 daily low records have been set already this month.  Although temperatures are forecast to rise over the weekend they are also set to plunge again next week.
Although it is 4 months before we fly out I am beginning to think about the impact that these low temperatures and particularly the sea ice will have on our trip.  Clearly its not going to prevent our paddle taking place but it could well be more entertaining from the ice perspective, we will be watching the conditions closely over the next few months.
Large ice bergs provide a dramatic backdrop to any sea kayaking trip.
There are some great lunch spots!
 Paddling in front of the Eqi Glacier, we were several miles out from the ice cliffs when this picture was taken.  Scale can be deceptive.

 There is something memorable about sea kayaking in ice.  Route finding can be quite entertaining.

There is frequently plenty of wildlife to be seen, normally very different to that encountered in home waters.
 Although we were far enough north to have continuous daylight during our time in Greenland there were some spectacular sunsets.

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