26 May 2015

We have arrived at EGRIP!


Dorthe walks with a flag to set it where the new EGRIP camp will be established

This has been a good day! As our configuration was working fine, we could leave early. The snow cooperated and we made good time.

12 km before EGRIP, the lead vehicles appeared to sink into the snow as they passed the broad valley formed by the edge of the NorthEast Greenland Ice Stream (NEGIS). We are setting up camp in the middle of the ice stream. It is 20 km wide at this spot, but in contrary to a flow velocity of the surrounding ice sheet of approx. 5 m/year, the ice stream moves 50 m/year towards NNE, where the ice will finally be discharged through Nioghalvfjerdsfjorden and Zachariae Isbræ, some 500 km away. We are here to investigate why an ice stream can be so active so far into the ice sheet.

People were happy on arrival. It is a huge relief that we made it through. Our main dome has taken the 465 km of bumpy ride in the stride. This night, we discovered the only damage so far: A nail had vibrated its way through an electrical wire, causing our circuit breakers to trip.

Both the traverse group and the snowmobile groups were happy and tired. Tomorrow everybody is allowed to sleep in. We have already begun marking out the future camp. Dorthe went onto the snow with a flag and decided where the future center of camp shall be. We made it!

At this occasion, I feel a deep sense of gratitude to the efforts of our crew and in particular to the Greenland Ice Sheet Traverse (GrIT) team. They lent us the assistance of a tractor and sled, and GrIT team member, Pat Smith has given us invaluable support, done hard work and shared his extensive wisdom during the traverse. THANK YOU.

What we have done today:

1. Service on vehicles.
2. Dome moved at 9.30 and the other vehicles at the same time. At 16.30 we
    had arrived at EGRIP (75.63N, 35.99W) 2660 m altitude (GPS). EGRIP is
    453 km from NEEM site. 3. Made 53 km today.
4. Measurement of radar and GPS en-route.
5. Snow sampling en-route.
6. Marking up of new camp in progress.

Weather: Beautiful day. Temp. – 16 °C to -32 °C, 2-4 m/s from SW. Visibility:  Unrestricted.

FL, J.P. Steffensen

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