greenland glacier Kayaking & HIKing expedition

DISKO Bay - a unesco world Heritage site

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BOOKINGS ARE OPEN for 2020

spring trip: 20th June to 4th July 2020

(limited Availability)

summer trip: 4th to 18th July

(GOod Availability)

 

The trips:

These are our yearly kayaking, hiking & whale watching trips in one of Greenland’s most unique arctic environments. We go to Disko Bay which is a UNESCO World Heritage site, kayak among huge icebergs, hike to the interior, whale watch and enjoy the magical light of the midnight sun. We time the trips at the best window to whale watch.

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In our trips we hope that you will enjoy what we bring and our way of doing things:

  • Our group leader, Roger Chandler, is an experienced coach and guide with a track history of mentoring and bringing both male & female paddlers to top levels of development.

  • We have a group spirit and friendly attitude which we share during our trips: we cook together and enjoy social time in our communal tipi tent where you can eat your meals relax before returning to your own tent.

  • We prepare all your breakfasts and dinners taking into account that you will be hungry, will need calories and a good meal at the end of the day counts for a lot. In 2019 we had Italian pastas with forest mushrooms, Indian curries with plenty of veg, Moroccan stews full of flavour and French veg dishes full of non-animal protein. We cater for a variety dietary & allergy requirements, vegetarians and vegans.

  • We work with local people because we believe that making a contribution to the economy of small remote communities is important. In return, we have made friends and get fantastic local logistic and emergency support.

  • We go to Disko Bay, where the possibility of encountering a polar bear is less than 1%. Therefore, we do not endanger them or encroach on their territory.

In order to enjoy the trip and the wonderful environment to the full we recommend that you have experience of paddling trips of several days duration and are comfortable paddling a loaded boat for as much as six hours a day, with breaks (though days will often be shorter than this). Winds are usually light, and if the wind gets up we stay off the water. However, if necessary, you need to feel comfortable paddling in winds which may occasionally reach Force 4. Landings can be rocky and, while the group leaders will ensure landing sites are feasible, you should be prepared for this. Journeying and camping is a fantastic experience, and can be quite hard work. If you have done it before you will enjoy the frequent experience of packing and unpacking the boats and setting up and breaking camp in different places.

Photo by Neil Buckland:  www.tinmanphotography.co.uk

Photo by Neil Buckland: www.tinmanphotography.co.uk

The duration will be 16 days which include travel from the UK. To maximise the time, the trip will take place over 3 weekends and 2 weeks, meaning participants only need 2 weeks off work.

The 2020 expedition is be led by one of the UK top kayak coaches. Roger Chandler works in Anglesey and coaches and expeditions in demanding environments. He runs one to the roof of Scotland, participates in coaching in the Orkney islands and has done several arctic expeditions. You will be in very good hands and will have the opportunity to develop your kayaking skills to a new level.

A photo opportunity not far from Ililussat.

A photo opportunity not far from Ililussat.

This expedition is an opportunity to paddle in a pristine ice environment in the arctic. We will set off from Ilulissat and travel north exploring the coastline, fjords and bays on the route before turning around. We expect to see plenty of wild life, including polar foxes, Greenland falcons and several species of whales. In 2018 & 2019 we had sightings of whales most days during our trip. The Jackobshavn glacier next to Ilulissat calves the largest icebergs in Greenland which makes paddling here a once in a lifetime experience. At midnight, the light turns golden and the seascape with its bergs and puffing whales becomes magical. 

We work with local businesses to make sure our visit benefits the local community. In 2019 & 2020, we work with a local Greenlandic family who has recently established a new business in a small village.

Tunnels in icebergs are a spectacular sight.

Tunnels in icebergs are a spectacular sight.

A typical day in Greenland during our expedition is anything but predictable. The weather rules all! But it might go something like this:

Breakfast is at 9am in our communal tent if the temperature has climbed by that hour. If not, we will have a lie in until the day warms up. There is light for 24 hrs, so there is no pressure to start or stop early. Everyone is involved in cooking and camp duties so you will get to help around. If the conditions are good for paddling, we will spend 2 or 4 hours on the water covering between 10 and 20 kms. The going among the bergs is slow, as we need to be cautious, but also because they are spectacular and everyone wants to enjoy the sights and take pictures. When whales appear among the bergs, we spend time enjoying the scene, taking video and photos.

We normally stop for a hot drink and a light lunch. In the evenings we cook together and socialise. Not every day we might move camp. If the camp is good to go exploring from the kayaks or on foot, we might stay there more than one night. If the weather is not right for kayaking, we might go hiking in the tundra, go foraging for mussels or fishing, and those wanting a rest, can spend a day sleeping, reading or chatting in the communal tent.

Iceberg & kayaker.

Iceberg & kayaker.

Training Dates 2020 dates:

  • 227th, 28th & 29th of March.

  • Training cost: £250

  • Friday - Questions, Kit & Operational Workshop

  • Saturday & Sunday on the water workshops with Roger

Glassy grey day.

Glassy grey day.

As this is a coached expedition, there is the opportunity for paddlers to work as 'seconds' to the expedition leader if their experience is relevant. For example a 4 Star or Sea Leader paddler looking to gather experience for their Advanced Sea Leader award. Additionally, group members can take on tasks and jobs to help with the organisation and running of the expedition.

Here is a video of the 2019 expeditions created by Roger.

PRICE: £3,500

It includes:

  • Coaching & guiding in Greenland

  • Kayak, spray deck & BA

  • All dinners and breakfasts and tea/coffee during the expedition

  • Communal tent for socialising, cooking & eating

  • Safety, Communication and First Aid equipment

To book, there is a non-refundable £1,500. Balance is due 6 months prior to departure. Payment plans can also be arranged with participants.

Additionally, you will need to budget for expenses including kit, flights, two nights’ accommodation in Copenhagen, your nights in Ilulissat, snacks, all your lunches and some sundries.

Join our Kayaking in Greenland group on Facebook to meet others and exchange questions, experiences, photos, etc…: https://www.facebook.com/groups/kayakingingreenland/

or our Facebook Explora Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/exploraexpeditions/

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PADDLE 4 CHANGE:

Our Greenland Trip prides itself of working with local people to bring benefits to the local community and businesses. In 2019 & 2020 we work with a Greenlandic/French family based in a small village of 24 inhabitants. This family keeps the local traditions alive from the food they will share with us to their sled dog teams that they use during winter for travelling, hunting and fishing. We hope that our collaboration helps them and their community to be more successful and it give us and our participants the opportunity to interact with local people and have a deeper experience of the place.

As part of our program we have a rubbish management plan to make as little an impact as possible in this pristine environment. In addition, we will collect rubbish from the ocean and the shores and dispose of it according to our plan.

In order to support local conservancy work of polar bears, we are adopting cubs and making donations. Please follow the link to Polar Bears International to learn about the amazing work they do.