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The Outstanding Arctic Circle Trail

MadsenCrockett6117Feb 01, 2019

The concept of trekking a long waymarked trail in Greenland must conjure pictures of endless ice-fields, marauding polar bears, desperate struggles for survival and big expense. In reality, the Arctic Circle Trail supplies a pretty easy trek, provided it really is approached with careful thought and planning. Neglect the huge ice-cap and polar bears, which are there if you want them, such as the feature for the trail. Instead, focus on one of several largest ice-free parts of Greenland, relating to the air-port at Kangerlussuaq and also the western seaboard at Sisimiut.

The Arctic Circle Trail is genuinely north from the Arctic Circle for its entire length, meaning that in midsummer there isn't any nightfall, and also for the brief summer months ordinary trekkers can enjoy the wild and desolate tundra by simply following stone-built cairns. Taking into account that there are absolutely nowhere you can obtain provisions on the way, for over 100 miles (160km), the hard part shall be ruthless when packing food and all sorts of kit you need to stay alive. Water is clean, fresh, plentiful and freely available. In the event you bring your food to Greenland and limit your spending, the trail could be completed on a tight budget. Detailed maps and guidebooks can be found.

Some trekkers burden themselves with huge and packs, which require great effort to transport, which means carrying a great deal of food to stoke with extra calories. Think light and pack light. There are some basic wooden huts at intervals on the way, offering four walls, a roof covering, and bunks for between four and 24 trekkers. They are not staffed, can't be pre-booked, and gives no facilities apart from shelter. Should you possess a tent, it is possible to pitch it anywhere you prefer, subject simply to the character of the terrain and the prevailing weather.

Normally, the next thunderstorm comes from two directions - east and west. An easterly breeze, coming off of the ice-cap, is cool and also dry. A westerly breeze, coming from the sea, provides cloud and a way of rain. It won't snow within the short summer time, mid-June to mid-September, and also for the remaining time, varying numbers of ice and snow will take care of the path, as well as in the middle of winter it will likely be dark on a regular basis and temperatures will plummet far, far below freezing for months on end.

The air-port at Kangerlussuaq enjoys around 300 clear-sky days each year, so the weather must be good, and also the trail starts following a straightforward tarmac and dirt road. Beyond the research station at Kellyville, the trail is simply narrow path across empty tundra dotted with lakes. If you intend to steer from hut to hut, then the route will need maybe nine days, unless stages are doubled-up. Utilizing a tent offers greater flexibility, plus some trekkers complete the route within per week. Huts can be found at Hundeso, Katiffik, The Canoe Centre, Ikkattook, Eqalugaarniarfik, Innajuattok, Nerumaq and Kangerluarsuk Tulleq. Youth hostels and hotels can be found in the terminal points of Kangerlussuaq and Sisimiut.

You have the choice to make use of a free kayak to paddle throughout the day down the large lake of Amitsorsuaq, instead of walk along its shore. There are only a number of kayaks, if they are all moored in the 'wrong' end of the lake, then walking could be the only option. The trail is frequently low-lying, below 500ft (150m), but climbs occasionally over 1300ft (400m), notably around Ikkattook, Iluliumanersuup Portornga and Qerrortusuk Majoriaa. There is a couple of river crossings whose difficulty depends upon melt-water and rainfall. They're difficult early in the season, but much better to ford later. The greatest river, Ole's Lakseelv, features a footbridge if needed.

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