At about 6:00 a.m., National Geographic Explorer cruises past the mouth of Ilulissat Icefjord, north of the Arctic Circle. The entrance, or terminus, is an icy wall, a couple hundred feet tall in places. The fjord is almost straight. It was not made by any valley glacier twisting and turning like a frozen river. This fjord was made by a mighty arm of the Greenland Icecap that punched its way through mountains and valleys from Greenland’s interior to the sea. We dock in Ilulissat. It is a pretty town, but our day is built around Ilulissat Icefjord, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The iceberg parent is Sermeq Kujalleq (formerly Jakobshavn Glacier), the most active glacier in the world, north of Antarctica. Today, we explore the icefjord from the land and the sea.
National Geographic Explorer
Today was our last full day in Greenland. We all had a good sleep-in after last night’s trivia competition. Dave gave us a wonderful introduction into the Lightroom post-processing workflow as we sailed along through the fog. Aleqa followed with an extensive lecture on politics and political interests in Greenland. We all learned so much. After lunch, Andreas gave a sobering talk about climate change in the Arctic. Shortly after, we went outside to enjoy the warm summer temperatures in Greenland. Just outside Itilleq, on the west coast of Greenland, the fog finally lifted. We went out in the Zodiacs for one last time to explore the majestic fjord environment that surrounded us. What a spectacular end of the voyage. Back on board, we celebrated the end of our voyage with the guest slideshow assembled by our photo instructor, Dave. Captain Yuri wished us farewell as we sailed along into the fog. Photo caption and photographer: Beautiful scenery in a fjord near Itilleq. Photo by Patrick Webster