Post 282: 5 August 2018, the Prince Christian Sound Passage and Huge Icebergs
Having departed from Tasiilaq at 15.00 hours the previous day, we sailed through the night and began encountering huge icebergs at about midday.
Given that you can only see nine tenths of the iceberg above water, they do create an imposing site, particularly when you are on a ship.
We were due to enter the Prince Christian Sound Passage which would avoid going around the southern tip of Greenland, Cape Farewell. The passage is 62 miles long (100 km) and its maximum width is 1.7 miles (2.7km). It joins the Labrador Sea and Irminger Sea (North Atlantic Ocean).
We arrived at the entrance to the passage at about 14.30 where a small communication settlement was evident and the entrance to the passageway soon started to reduce in width.
It was time to get dressed up for the passageway, which was likely to be cold and out of the sun. Also to get cameras and binoculars ready. The order of the day was lots and lots of layers, including goose down body warmers and fancy warm hats. I was now grateful for my new thin gloves for photography, which I had bought in Akureyri, Iceland earlier in the voyage.
There would be no walking today other than around the ship, but the great thing about cruising is that the ship takes you to the dramatic scenery. This day we would be entering real ‘Lord of the Rings’ scenery. Quite staggering and stunning. For someone whose favourite subject was geography at school it was to be arcadia; a cold arcadia with many of the following:
The edge of the ice-cap (only found on a ‘continental’ scale in Antartica and Greenland; in the latter it covers 660,000 square miles, (1,710,000 square kilometres) with an average thickness of 1.74 miles ( 2.8 kilometres), length 1650 miles (2,650 kilometres), maximum width of 650 miles (1,050 kilometres).
In addition, huge glaciers, ice-flows, weathered icebergs including tabular icebergs, berg bits, ice blink, shuga, growlers (small ice-flows), consolidated ice, open ice, ice islands, close ice, grease ice, finger rafting, rind ice, terminal, medial, lateral, ground, sub-glacial and other moraine, firns, ice-sheets, glacial valleys, erratics, bergschrunds, crevasses, randklufts, seracs, mourns (‘glacier mill’), ogives (dirt bands), glacier snouts, cirque-glaciers or glacierets, wall-sided glaciers, tide-water or tidal glaciers, piedmont glaciers, mountain aretes and peaks, truncations, trough-ends, rock steps, roche mouton (abrasion, plucking), drift, till (boulder clay).
There is even a baby seal!!
I will say no more and let you sit back, relax and watch it pass you by on the screen………………
Baby seal hitching a lift
Aappilattoq with a population of approximately 150, 132 in 2010 and 200 in 1991. The average age is 31.5. Only accessible by boat or in an emergency by helicopter. It again suffers from the difficulties of disposing of more modern rubbish.
Not a good idea to meet one of these in a narrow passage as we were soon to find out next day at 3.15am! Simply stunning aretes.
Leaving the passageway of Prince Christian Sound, we entered open sea, where the icebergs just got bigger.
We were due to arrive at Narsarsuag at 7am next morning, but were to have a startling awakening in the night…