On most long trips the first days packing always seems to present challenges but we quickly had several supermarket trolley loads of food stashed away and were heading out of the small harbour at Uummannaq, into the bright sunshine.
Stories of icebergs collapsing follow you around in Greenland and it is very easy to be lulled into a false sense of security but this film below was shot in Uummannaq in August and if it had occured whilst we were leaving, our trip would have been over before it started as the waves crashed across the area we were using to pack!
Iluliaq aserortoq from Franz Petersen on Vimeo.
Our route for the day took us across a 4 mile channel to the island of Storoen, before passing under some kilometre high cliffs and heading towards the ice. The weather remain settled throughout the day meaning that it was relatively straightforward to cover 20 nautical miles during the day. It was 6 very contended sea kayakers who sat on the rocks at the end of the day contemplating the awesome scenery we had paddled past during the day.
The island of Storoen dominated our view for the first few miles.
It is always important to look behind. This is the amazing view of Uummannaq Island as we paddled away from the harbour.
Miles of vertical cliffs dominated the north coast of Storoen
At this point the cliffs are over 1,000 metres high, they were of a scale which was difficult to comprehend
Our first encounter with a berg on any size was close to the small island of Satut.
Large bergs very quickly gave way to smaller, but more densely packed, pieces of ice.
Our first camp site was close to the small hut at Qingoq. Sitting inside whilst we ate our evening meal gave some welcome respite from the attentions of the local insect population
Our target for the following day was into the ice and around to the right, hopefully getting a view of the calving glaciers in Itivdllarssup Kangerdlua.
24 hours of daylight means that the views can be simple stunning at midnight.