Davis Strait

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18 travelers at this place

  • Day434

    An early morning visitor named Mr. Bear

    November 18, 2018 ⋅ ⛅ -19 °C

    "Ugh, do we really need BOTH these boards EVERY night?" sighed the exasperated helicopter engineer as he fought to place two wet and swollen boards into the custom built holders on either side of the door frame. My boss quipped, "Nope, but you're the one that gets to hold the door closed against any polar bears that decide they want inside the cabin."

    The engineer knew the boards were going up and he knew he was the one that was going to do it because for the last weeks, he was the person that had graciously taken the frustrating duty on along with turning off the generator outside for all of us. (selfless person to let everyone else ready for bed with light). Normally, putting up the boards isn't such an annoying task, but, this year, the rains had not broken and our plywood shack, with no insulation and no real barriers to the wet, was soaked. The door didn't want to close, the cabin was sinking noticeably in one corner (a corner which just so happened to hold the oil stove and made walking in the cabin a sometimes dangerous affair when you felt yourself staggering towards the burning stove!), and putting those damn boards up was a nightly struggle. In fact, going out to pee in the night was a decision in which "do I feel like removing those stuck boards" or "do I risk peeing on myself in my sleeping bag" was a real question.

    Nevertheless, we all remained true to protocol and always the boards went up and we went to sleep peaceful in our bunk coffins with everyone else within arm's reach.

    Rousing me out of my sleep almost 7 hours later, is the engineer's voice. This time he is repeating, in a voice that immediately breaks any lingering sleep reverie, what seems like completely irrelevant information to share at 5 am. "Daisy is barking. Daisy is barking." My brain: "why are you telling me this and why are you getting out of bed with just your undies on? This is completely uncharacteristic of you Mr. Engineer Man." Then my sleep-addled brain got it. A BEAR! There must be a bear!

    That's when my second dose of reality hit. My brain began berating me, "Damnit Jasmine why did you decide to wear pink lacey thongs under your yoga pants?!?! You can't be seen jumping out of your bunk to fight a bear in Victorias Secret ridiculousness! What kind of idiot brings those to field camp?" The bear would have to wait. I quickly began trying to locate my well-placed yoga pants in the dark and put them on in my bunk that has so little headspace that it is impossible to sit up. While I frantically tried to pull them on, I was donkey kicking below me trying to rouse my apparently earplugged-to-the-max boss. Evidently my kicking worked because he started to move. While trying to pull on stretchy pants and wake my boss, the engineer had made his way to the door of the cabin and was going to look outside. I heard the door open and then furiously slam. "Not good", I thought.

    The engineer burst back into the cabin and threw his back against the door with arms and legs spread eagle yelling, "THERE'S A BEAR. ON THE PORCH. IT FUCKING LOOKED AT ME. 3 FEET."

    Turns out, that's all you need to say to get 5 otherwise peacefully-slumbering folks out of their sleeping bags and bunks in a hot second.

    I was just slipping on my glasses, because, well, I didn't figure I should be slinging firearms around without my glasses, when my boss jumped out of his bunk in his undies and grabbed the .44 magnum revolver that lived by his bed.

    The engineer had already grabbed the shotgun that lived by the door for these such occasions and together they started pacing about the cabin in their undies trying to assess the situation. The difficulty here was that the shack had but one fairly useless window the size of a commercial cookie sheet. So, we had approximately a 10 degree view of a situation in which, oh, I don't know, 360 degrees would have been nice.

    We quickly saw a blur of white run past the window. Was that the bear?! The barking had not stopped. Then we saw the blur again. It was not the bear. It was the white husky bear dog Daisy protecting us and clearly trying to let us know to get our shit together and help her out there!

    The guys with guns decided that they could not safely open the door. There was an 8 inch ventilation pipe that went through the wall of the cabin through to the bathroom which shared a wall with the one-room cabin. The bathroom was a 3ft by 3 ft room that was accessed from the outside. The ventilation pipe, coming from the inside of the cabin passed across the top of the bathroom. However, I guess there wasn't quite 3 feet of pipe because that vent tube stopped about 7inches shy of actually exiting the bathroom (it was great getting to listen to folks play games on their phone or listen to music while they were in the bathroom---a vent pipe and plywood wall aren't exactly the most sound-deadening). The engineer took the shotgun, filled with banger ammunition that is designed to scare away wildlife with it's loud 'bang', and shot through that 8 in ventilation pipe while the rest of us covered our ears. "BANG, BANG, BANG" he shot.

    Then, it was back to our cookie sheet sized window to see if the bear had moved to the other side of the cabin. Nope. Not a sign. It was the moment of truth. The front door had to be opened.

    The two guys approached the door with weapons at the ready. Standing like two stooges, one head above the other, in their tight boxer briefs, the cracked the door. Then, they exploded through yelling. The bear had retreated toward our tent filled with food and gear. The guys ran off the porch yelling, "GIT, GIT! while firing more rounds of bangers and .44 rounds into the air.

    As the bear ran up and over the hill, I couldn't help but have the image of those two standing out in the cold, barefoot, in their underwear, yelling and shooting seared into my brain.

    The morning's wakeup call got us all going and we quickly got dressed to go after the bear with the helicopter. The dog was gone. We didn't know if she had chased the bear or been chased by the bear. The pilot and engineer fired up the bird and off we flew to give that bear one more taste of bad human experience. We found the bear, made it have a bad morning, and then returned to camp to find the dog waiting on her cadre of helpless humans.

    We spent the rest of the day weathered in and looking nervously over our shoulder when venturing outside for pees or smokes. Daisy spent her day curled up and happy from many carrot treats as reward for her heroism.
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  • Day7

    Schlittenhundetour

    February 29 ⋅ ☀️ -24 °C

    Heute ging es dann raus mit dem Hundeschlitten.

    Dank einer lieben Frau, die auch in unserer Unterkunft übernachtet und schon mehrfach in Ilulissat war konnten wir eine Tour ins Landesinnere machen, anstatt der Touristentour zum Flughafen.

    Eine unglaubliche Erfahrung, die uns trotz der zusätzlichen Klamotten erste Erfrierungen eingebracht hat.

    Die Huskys werden zwar wild gehalten, sind aber trotzdem wunderbare Geschöpfe.
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  • Day5

    Einsamkeit und Buckelwale

    June 28, 2015 ⋅ ☀️ 14 °C

    Good morning vom "Eisbergblickfrühstückstisch".
    Heute erkunden wir die Tundra in einer anderen Richtung. Wir laufen wieder durch die "Hundezone", am Heliport vorbei bis zum Friedhof. Wir laufen nicht Richtung Inlandeis, sondern möchten zur Mündung des Eisfjordes, dort wo die treibenden Riesen geboren werden. Das Wetter lässt keine Wünsche offen...immer noch stahlblauer Himmel ohne Wolken...unglaublich...und das 24 Stunden pro Tag...für Grönland viiiiel zu warm! Aber das möchte ich an dieser Stelle nicht diskutieren. Für die paar Tage, die wir hier sein dürfen natürlich ein Glücksfall.
    Der "Weg" führt durch die Tundra, über Felsen, durch Wasserlöcher, bergauf, bergab und auf einmal eröffnet sich vor uns der gigantische Eisfjord. Das Donnern der abbrechenden Eismassen wird lauter und lauter, wir biegen nach rechts ab und stehen nach einer weiteren Stunde an der Mündung zum Meer. Hoch oben haben wir einen phantastischen Blick auf diese großartige Szenerie. Uns stockt der Atem! Hier wurde der "Titaniceisberg" geboren und der südlichste, von hier stammende, Eisberg trieb vor den Azoren! Wow!
    Diese Wanderung ist der Hammer! Bald treffen wir auf eine, nicht mehr bewohnte, Torfhütte. Dort picknicken wir, mit Blick auf das unter uns liegende Eisbergmeer. Plötzlich durchdringt ein ganz anderes Geräusch unsere Stille...ich erkenne es sofort, auch wenn ich es noch nicht orten kann. Wer den Blas eines Wales schon neben sich gehört hat, wird ihn nicht wieder vergessen. Für mich hat sich dies seit meiner ersten Pottwalbegegnung eingebrannt. Ich war sofort hellwach...aufmerksam beobachtete ich das Meer zwischen den Eisbergen...und da entdeckte ich sie...Buckelwale!!!!! Meine ersten dieser Art!!! Juhu, ich kann es kaum fassen. Wir bleiben ewig hier sitzen, lauschen der Stille, die immer wieder von ihrem kräftigen Blas unterbrochen wird. Grandios!...so grandios, das ich das Fotografieren vergaß!!! Das ist mir noch nie passiert
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  • Day9

    Crasheisbootsfahrt

    July 2, 2015

    Einen sonnigen guten Morgen! Wir machen uns gemütlich auf den Weg zum Hafen. Hier liegt schon unser Boot, welches uns gleich gen Norden befördert. Die Sonne strahlt, doch auf dem Wasser zwischen den Eisbergen ist es kaaaalt. Wir genießen die vorbeiziehende Landschaft...Wasserfälle, die sich ins Meer ergießen...rundgelutschte Felsen...selten mal bunte Häuschen. Dann kommen wir "um die Ecke" und ein phantastisches Panorama eröffnet sich uns. Über solch eine Mächtigkeit sind wir, wie so oft in diesen Tagen, geflasht. Wir "schwimmen" vor der 2,3 Kilometer langen und 130 Meter hohen Abbruchkante des EQIP SERMIA...ein mächtiger Gletscher, dessen Abbruchkante uns vorkommen lässt wie lauter Ameisen in Spielzeugschiffen. Hier dümpeln wir ohne Motor eine gute Stunde im Crasheis. Ständig bricht unter lautem Getöse ein Stück Gletscher ab. Unser Skipper muss ab und an mal den Motor anschmeißen, um uns aus dem Eis ringsherum zu befreien. Wir halten genügend Abstand...ABER: nicht vorstellbar, wenn ein riesiges Stück abbrechen sollte...dann wäre hier jeder gute Abstand zu klein. Die Welle würde alles mit sich reißen.
    Ich kann es nicht oft genug erwähnen, wie unglaublich mich solche Naturkräfte beeindrucken!!!
    Wieder zurück in unserem "Luxustempel" :-)))) machen wir uns schick. Wir haben uns Anfang der Woche 2 Plätze im Restaurant "Mamartut" reserviert. Hier findet 1x wöchentlich ein typisches grönländisches Buffet statt.
    Also machen wir uns auf den Weg an das andere Ortsende, wo wir 2 Plätze reserviert haben...und zwar grönländischen Buffet. Wir sind gespannt, haben Hunger und sind voller Erwartung. Kim vom " Mamartut" begrüßt uns und platziert uns mit frontalem Blick auf das Buffet. Lecker sieht es ja aus. Als die Tische gefüllt waren, wurde das Buffet eröffnet...Robbensuppe, Rentierbraten, Stockfisch, "Mattak" = Walhaut, Moschusochsenschulter, marinierte Amassetten, roher Fisch, Lachs, Heilbutt uvm............wir haben uns durchgekostet und für uns leider befunden, das das nichts für uns ist. Wir essen ja alles, probieren alles, sind nicht mäkelig, aber das hier muss man schon sehr mögen. Fett, Fett, Fett, keine Gewürze, nur der Eigengeschmack, vieles roh und knorpelig................wir haben alles gekostet, aber konnten unseren Hunger nicht stillen.
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  • Day4

    Arrived in Sisimuit

    August 26, 2019 ⋅ ⛅ 6 °C

    17.15 and heading away from Sisimuit after a really interesting day with ‘Birdy’ a really lovely Inuit girl who gave us a tour of the Municipality.

    It’s now 17.35 and we’re sailing through a Sea Mist, which is incredibly eerie...we’ve also seen a ‘white rainbow’, again it’s truly unbelievable what the first sailors must have felt to come across these experienced for the first time in the 1800’s, awesome!Read more

You might also know this place by the following names:

Davis Strait, Davis Stræde, Davisstrædet, Détroit de Davis

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