West coast greenland Helicopter skiing itinerary: an experience of a lifetime
Western Greenland is the land of the midnight sun and includes a vast heliski terrain in some of the most remote areas in the world. Greenland boasts a cornucopia of arctic experiences including giant icebergs as well as the Ilulissat Icefjord, which is honoured with a place on the esteemed list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
From the Disko Bay area in central West Greenland to the polar extremes of the far north, the scale of Greenland is hard to fathom. Along a coastline stretching thousands of miles lie small communities based on hunting and fishing, in a land ruled by the polar night of winter and the summer’s midnight sun.
The Ilulissat Icefjord and Disko Bay are known for diversity in landscapes and wildlife as well as a deeply rooted culture. Unique volcanic rocks sit along the hiking trials on Qeqertarsuaq while massive icebergs flow through the ocean from one of the world's fastest flowing glaciers. Summer dog sledding on the Lyngemark Glacier as well as constant whale sightings are both events that make Greenland a one of a kind destination.
Getting To Greenland
Travel Leg 1) Our guest journey will begin in Kangerlussuaq Greenland (SFJ), the international hub of Greenland. Whether you wish to travel by Private or Commercial aircraft, Kangerlussuaq is your gateway to the Arctic.
Travel Leg 2) Upon your arrival in Kangerlussuaq, our guests have the option to fly commercial or charter a private Air Greenland Dash 8 Turboprop flight to Ilulissat, Greenland (JAV) to rendezvous with the Legend.
Once aboard Legend, we will depart Ilulissat and venture across Disko Bay to Disko Island, our first helicopter skiing zone of the trip. During this journey we will organize the groups ski gear, as well as issue and discuss all safety equipment and procedures for the upcoming week. After a few short briefings, it will be time to settle in and enjoy the views as we pass by some of the area's most impressive and awe-inspiring icebergs. We will anchor near the island that night to be in position to begin skiing the next morning.
After breakfast we will gear up and lift off in a private A-Star helicopter to explore and ski one of the world’s most remote mountain ranges. Your heliski journey will take you North, along the East coast of Disko Island where you will ski endless expanses of new mountains and perpetual snow. Thoughout the days adventure, you may also see wildlife such as humpback whales, Greenlandic eagles and fox. Upon your return, enjoy the sights of the Midnight Sun an arctic phenomenon, where the sun never sets; rather the soft blue hues of the evening sky remain throughout the next morning.
As we continue our heliskiing adventure north, there will be many opportunities for sightseeing and exploring the Disko Island coast. On days where conditions do not permit us to fly we can ski tour the coast line of Disko Island, explore the strait with one of the Legend’s many tenders, or simply unwind in the Legend’s spa facilities. After a day of exploration, gather for a meal accompanied by cocktails prepared with blue glacier ice.
This adventure will take you across the Sullorsuaq Strait to the northerly tip of the Nuussuaq Peninsula where you will explore summits reaching 2100 meters and glacier filled lakes. As you pioneer new ski terrain you will find peace in the solitude of the mountains and experience terrain unlike anything else. After a day of flying over mountain peaks, explore the depths of the ocean with the Legends submarine.
While you continue experiencing life aboard The Legend you will accompany your days of heliskiing with many great activities such as deep sea fishing, flightseeing, fine dining, whale watching and many more. As you finish up each day, you will be greeted by a plethora of luxuries aboard the Legend to relax from the day. Including, but not limited to, a heated swimming pool, spa, multiple lounges and bars, and a theater.
As you begin the journey back to Ilulissat, you will be engulfed in the Arctic's extraordinary landscape. Wildlife, icebergs, and seemingly endless glaciers will be among the many sights. One glacier you will be exposed to is the very active Eqip Sermia. Not only is the Eqip Sermia the most active calving glacier in Greenland, it is also very accessible. Exploring this glacier provides for a breathtaking experience as you watch large ice chunks break off the glacier into the water. Eqip Sermia glacier also provides for hiking opportunities. Stretch your legs once more as you explore the many vantage points provided by this beautiful hike.
Upon your return to Ilulissat our guests have the opportunity to visit the Ilulissat Icefjord, a World Heritage Site, and home to the Jakobshavn Glacier, one of the worlds fastest moving ice sheets. After a day of flightseeing and hiking, our guest can dine at the Hotel Arctic or take a walk through the colorful village before your departure. With an abundance of culture, an evening in Ilulissat is the perfect way to conclude your Greenlandic adventure.
Depart Ilulissat for Kangerlussuaq and onward to home. A trip to the Interior ice cap could be organized while the group is in Kangerlussuaq or near the coast of Ilulissat
Down day & Additional Activities:
- Dog Sledding
- Ski Touring
- Submarine Tours
- Unique Dinning
- Boat Tours
- Ice Climbing/ Trekking
- Deep Sea Fishing
- Whale Watching
Additional Sights and actives in Ilulissat:
- Nature and Hiking
Sermermiut: When hiking to the old settlement of Sermermiut, you are walking along Ilulissat Ice Fjord. From here the view of the stranded icebergs is absolutely perfect.
- Sailing among the Icebergs: Go on a boat trip among the icebergs, under the midnight sun- it is an experience unless anything else!
- Whale Safari: It is possible to go on a whale safari surrounded by icebergs in the Disko Bay. The boat trip gives you plenty of time to observe the giants of the sea at close range.
- City Walk
- A walk around town on your own or with a guide is a must do. Ilulissat is, no doubt, a unique place and the view to the impressive icebergs floating in the Disko Bay is a spectacular sight. Around the town, you will see sled dogs waiting for the winter to come.
- Centrally placed in the town we find “Brættet”, where fishermen and local hunters sell their fresh catch to citizens and tourists. The supply is varied, and you will often find halibut, cod, seal and occasionally reindeer -, musk -, and whale meat.
- The Greenlandic Art Museum, one of the two museums in Ilulissat, exhibits many works by A. Peterson which documents the landscape and people of Greenland. Ilulissat is also home to the Knud Rasmussen Museum. Knud, a polar explorer, brought much attention to the Inuit culture.
- Kayak Harbor
The harbor is centrally located in the old part of town next to the hospital. Kayaking has been a key activity in Greenlanders way of life. Take a walk around Ilulissat's Kayak harbor and you will find handmade kayaks. You might even see the locals kayaking and practicing the Eskimo roll.
- The town provides a well-stocked supply of shops selling beautiful handcrafts. This is a great stop to purchase unique souvenirs. Some of the local artists have a workshop near the harbor, and people are welcome to pop in to see them processing bone and tooth into beautiful jewelry.
- During the months of September through May you will often encounter many dog sleds. Ilulissat is known for having a population of sled dogs as large as the number of inhabitants. Be sure to take a ride on the dog sled to get the true local experience.
- Ilulissat, being a very culturally rich town has many great options for dining. Local cuisine includes a lot of delicious free ranging lamb, reindeer, musk, shrimp and halibut.
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