Unplugged Wilderness Trek Day 5 – East Greenland

We awoke on Day 5 to lots of cloud, but at least no rain or drizzle … already an improvement over Day 4!   After breakfast and while we packed up camp, Maxime crossed back over the river to assist the boat drivers in re-loading the gear that we’d left over there the day before. 

Wrong drop-off location - Unplugged Wilderness - East Greenland

Meanwhile, we carried everything else over to a different pickup point that did not require a river crossing, and helped them load the rest of the gear once they came around.

Actual drop-off location - Unplugged Wilderness - East Greenland

Then we headed off up the fjord.  Lots of very moody half-vistas across the water.

Moody fjord - Unplugged Wilderness - East Greenland

But the most challenging part of today’s hike was the fact that for the first few hours we were walking along a 45 degree angled slope, which eventually started playing havoc on the ankles (if you didn’t have full hiking boots at least).

45 degree slopes are not great - Unplugged Wilderness - East Greenland

We also enjoyed more freezing river crossings

River crossings - Unplugged Wilderness - East Greenland

For significant river crossings we would change from hiking boots into sandals. Then change back again once we’d reached the other side. You know it’s cold if Maxime has his beanie on!!

and were all very happy when it finally flattened out.

Day 5 hiking - Unplugged Wilderness - East Greenland

We hiked along a river which we just knew we’d have to cross

Rivers - Unplugged Wilderness - East Greenland

and were all very relieved when Maxime’s “90%-certain” promise of a bridge turned out to be accurate.

Day 5 hiking - Unplugged Wilderness - East Greenland

This deposited us at Bluie East Two, an old American WWII air base that was destroyed and abandoned in 1947 at the conclusion of the war.  It still stands as it was left 70 years ago, with little (nothing?) having been done to clean it up.

Bluie Two East air base - Unplugged Wilderness - East Greenland

There are dozens of rusted vehicles half-buried in the earth

Bluie Two East air base - Unplugged Wilderness - East Greenland

the skeleton of a large hanger

Bluie Two East air base - Unplugged Wilderness - East Greenland

and an unfathomable number of rusted fuel barrels that stretch as far as the eye can see.

Bluie Two East air base - Unplugged Wilderness - East Greenland

It is, perhaps, the very last thing you would expect to see in such an otherwise pristine environment – which makes it quite a surreal experience.  Especially since we were the only ones there!

Our camping equipment was dropped at the correct spot today (it would have been hard to miss!) and we set up camp on what was the dock for the site.

Campsite at Bluie East Two - Unplugged Wilderness - East Greenland

 

Trekking Time:  approximately 7 hours

Read more:  links to my other blog posts about the 12-day Unplugged Wilderness Trek with Greenland Adventures by Icelandic Mountain Guides:

  • Day 1 – Tasiilaq to Kulusuk and along the Sermiligaaq Fjord 
  • Day 2 – Hike to the Karale Glacier
  • Day 3 – Hike to the lookout over Sermiligaaq Fjord and Karale Fjord
  • Day 4 – Karale Fjord camp to Beach camp
  • Day 5 – Beach camp to Bluie East Two
  • Day 6 – Bluie East Two along the Ikateq strait to the Tunu Fjord
  • Day 7 – Tunup Kua Valley to Tasiilaq Fjord
  • Day 8 – Along the Tasiilaq Fjord
  • Day 9 – Tasiilaq Fjord to Tasiilaq Mountain Hut
  • Day 10 – Tasiilaq Mountain Hut
  • Day 11 – Tasiilaq Mountain Hut to Tasiilaq Fjord to Kulusuk
  • Day 12 – Kulusuk to Reykjavik
  • Video Slideshow – of some of my favourite images
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