GREENLAND 2002 - DISPATCH 7 A Night to Remember

Good morning, early morning, from NHN! The weather is still holding excellently, however, there are some clouds building to the north and west of us. We're getting weather spoiled for sure.

The two separate parties have both returned safely to base camp. The nunatak ski group reports amazing geology out on the edge of the cap, but, unfortunately, no better way up the unnamed unclimbed pyramid that has so captured our attention. Paul and I have discussed going back up the same route on the pyramid as a pair, but we are both mulling the risk of this effort. More to follow on that. By the way, a nunatak is simply a mountain which is mostly submerged beneath the ice cap with some portion of its very upper bits protruding into the atmosphere.

James and I have just returned from a first ascent of two summits on the opposite side of the cirque from the pyramid. It was a nice ascent of steepening snow and ice to mixed ground that I linked over to a ridge which brought an snowy walk to the first rocky summit block.

The sight from the windless summit was one of the best in memory. The time was 2 AM, and the alpenglow hung on the peaks and glaciers for more than a hour. To the southwest the highest peaks in north Greenland stood out from a sea of peaks and ranges. We carried on to a further point to the northeast which offered equally dramatic views. These were both special summits for me.

We roped-up to cross a few crevasses on the way down, then we were pushing easy ski turns in an inch of powder. It was the best skiing so far, and a night to remember.

After seven days of long ski tours and climbs, we will consider a rest day tomorrow. It's hard to rest when there is still much to do. Out for now...



GREENLAND 2002 - Niels Holgersen Nunatakker Introduction