07-Jul-2014 -- CP 67N/50W
This is our second attempt to approach the CP during summer time. It ended 5 km south of the CP as an incomplete visit, but the circumstances may be of interest for potential visitors. We refer to the 1:100000 hiking map “Kangerlussuaq” and for the area east of 50°W to the 1:500000 Saga maps No. 3 or 4 “Kangerlussuaq”.
In winter it should be easy to accomplish the task by ski, but during summer the rivers from the glaciers pose serious problems, even if a canoe would be available. An approach must include either long distance walk over the glacier (not good) or to overcome one or two glacier rivers.
First we inspected the site north of the CP. There is a river coming from the Russel glacier - wading possible during early hours, but this solves not the whole problem, as the next river to be passed is much stronger. Both confluence in the valley “Sandflugdalen”. 2 km east of Kangerlussuaq this Sandflugdalen river is united with a more broader one coming from the neighbour valley “Ørkendalen”, i.e. “desert valley”. Here, in the confluence area, both flows are moderate, and with a canoe it would be possible to arrive at the land between the two streams (see picture #7). Then within two days of hiking the CP could be visited.
We, without canoe, decided then to approach the CP from south, following the hiking route recommended in the map, more or less parallel to and south of the Ørkendalen. After two days we had our base camp on a lake 9 km west of the ice cap that we visited the other day. Here on the Ørkendalen-river our closest position relative to the CP was 5 km south. On the hiking map the river is shown to split into many arms, but in real there is one strong river, virtually running from “Isordferssuaq” (768 m), a so-called nunatak (that means a summit showing out of the ice cap) 5 km east of our position. The river cuts the ice and moraines are built on both sides.
It seemed that we could easily arrive the nunatak on one moraine (5 km), then after a little scrambling over the nunatak, change to the other side of the river, return on the moraine there and arrive at solid ground (again 6-7 km), opposite to our position. Finally, after 3 km hiking north the CP will be on the ice just 800 m east. The conditions there could not be evaluated but it seemed as if there are no deep and/or broad clefts. Over all, this means hiking 30 km, to be done in one or two days, starting from a base camp that should then be chosen close to our best approach to the CP. The terrain is well suited for a tent, but visitors must share the site with musk oxen (picture # 5). Be aware to meet some of them. The drinking water has to be filtered because the river contains too much sediment. We were not well equipped for this procedure, neither had we a rope nor the crampons in our backpack.
The photos 2-5 were shot from a position displayed on the GPS instrument (photo #6). The CP area, the moraines, the nunatak “Isordferssuaq”, and the river are shown step by step, turning the direction of view from north to east. For the position of the CP follow the ice edge in picture #2, divide the distance between the river and the headland into halves and go there virtually 800 m east. Notice that the distance between the most western ice edge and the point where N-S-stream on the glacier meets the river is approximately 3 km.