Musk Ox Fjord, Ellesmere Island

Aug 30, 2018 - National Geographic Explorer

The dawn today had a steely, brooding mood about it. Low clouds left only some gray light on the hills, and a fresh dusting of snow was a reminder that autumn comes early to the Arctic.

During breakfast, Expedition Leader Russ Evans took a scout boat ahead to see if the walrus we hoped were hauled out just inside the entrance to Musk Ox Fjord were indeed there. They were, and the expedition team began to prepare for a landing. But before the first staff boat was even lowered, the walruses had all moved into the water for their breakfast, and a visit to the beach was deferred to a later time.

National Geographic Explorer continued north. We explored the nearby shores for any wildlife, and a few hearty guests braved the chilled air on deck. We spotted an occasional harp seal working the shallows on the banks of the fjord as the low clouds began to lift and the skies brightened.

After lunch, we ventured to the deep north end of Musk Ox Fjord, hiking on tundra, over rocks and moss, and high up the hills while some of the guests enjoyed another opportunity to do some kayaking. In all, another fine day on Ellesmere Island.

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About the Author

Doug Gould

Expedition Leader

Travel and adventure were an integral part of Doug’s upbringing in a small town on the south shore of Long Island, New York. Growing up on the Great South Bay, his family claims Doug learned to sail before he learned to walk. Whether it was camping, sailing, birding, traveling across country or spending most of fifth grade living in Europe, Doug’s formative years left him with a love of wildlife, the outdoors, and a desire to keep moving. 

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