Wednesday, 6 July 2011


Humpback Whales in Qeqertarsuaq
Once again our morning started with a thick sea fog.  The fog was so thick when we dropped anchor that we often could not see the shore.  But around 09:30 the fog began to clear and shortly thereafter we began taking everyone to shore in the polar Cirkel boats.  It turned into a gorgeous sunny morning.  Qeqertarsuaq day, is the day when we hike into the Valley of the Winds.  Today there was a different atmosphere.  It felt quiet, like something special was about to happen.
A ten minute walk through the village brought us to a stunningly beautiful dark sandy beach.  Just 100 metres off shore lay several large icebergs.   Small chunks of brash ice had washed onto the beach providing a nice contrast to the dark sand.  Suddenly, just past the icebergs one of the Expedition Team spotted  Humpback Whales.   Something special was happening indeed!  Humpback whales just off shore and beautiful icebergs!  What an amazing hike!  We counted ten whales.  At one point it was very obvious that the whales were feeding as we could see them lunging through the water with their mouths agape.  In fact the only reason that the whales are in Greenland right now is to eat!
Flower photography hiking in the Valley of the Winds
We stood and watched the whales and icebergs to our heart's content and then continued on with the hike. There were beautiful wild flowers everywhere including; several species of Louseworts, Saxifrages, Cinquefoil, Diapensia, Large-flowered wintergreen, Arctic poppies, at least two species of willows with Catkins, Cassiope, Mountain Avens, Blue Heath, Arctic Bilberry and many others.
Soon we arrived at the waterfall.  If you follow this blog you will know that a pair of Canada Geese are nesting at the waterfall and that we have been waiting for the eggs to hatch.  Well, today there were three beautiful little yellow goslings!  Stay tuned.  We'll give you a goose report again next week.
Once back on the ship we enjoyed an excellent talk by our guest lecturer, former astronaut Claude Nicolier.
In the evening we were treated to a fashion show.  Items from the gift shop were modelled by the ship's officers and the Expedition Team.