Blog Archive

Tuesday, 9 August 2016

Anchorages in Scoresby Sound and Turner Island 2016

Pilotage information

Charcot Havn
70 46N 25 27W

Charcot Havn is a large glacier bay situated on the east side of Milne Land. The glacier has receded a mile or more up the valley leaving extensive mud banks and a heavy burden of silt in the bay. The beach appears to shelve steeply. We anchored 104m off the shore in 15 metres and found excellent holding. Ashore there are a lot of geese.

Fox Bay
70 27N 21 46W

Sheltered bay between Kap Tobin and Ittoqqortoormitt. A rock marked on the chart lies off the north side of the entrance and there are shallows near the south. However we found a channel just north of the centre with not less than 6m. Excellent holding in mud. We went ashore and walked towards Kap Tobin and heard the next day that polar bears had been encountered there recently.

70 28N 21 57W
We anchored in 15 metres and found good holding but others found kelp and had 6 goes at re-anchoring after they dragged. As the anchorage is subject to swell some choose nearby Aumdrup Bay instead. On our last night we anchored in Aumbrup and dragged in strong catabatic winds to 50 knots from the north. We found a lot of difficulty re-anchoring at the height of the wind storm caused by kelp.
Water and fuel are available but not alongside. There is a supermarket with a wide range of goods but is only re-supplied form Denmark in August and September. Prices appear subsidised. We informed the police of our arrival but formalities appear not to be enforced. On the hill at the met station a weather balloon is launched at 11am and 11pm and Erik the weather man is happy to share forecasts. I understand that wifi is available there too but I didn't try this. There are showers but not at weekends and meals ashore are said to be extremely expensive. Hunter meat is sold at the Tourist Office (Nanu Travel) but we didn't buy any. They allegedly sell meat from Musk Ox, Polar Bear, Seal, Arctic Char and Geese.
There is usually a resident doctor from Denmark on a 2 weekly rotation.
There is an expensive helicopter transfer to the Twin Otter air strip at Constable Point.
There are a few local open boats with outboards but a return trip to Milne Land is said to cost £6,000. They travel in pairs in case of breakdown.
Guns and ammunition can be bought at the supermarket but are expensive and .375 bullets were not a available when we visited. Guns can be hired from Nanu Travel but pre-booking is advised. Everyone assures us that guns must be carried once outside the the town.

Jyttes Havn
71 03.16N 25 37.3W

This is the most stunning anchorage. Despite the warnings of the pilot we found good holding in 13m about 100m west of a large rock and 80m from the shore. Astonishing views of the Cathedral Ranges and large grounded bergs just 200m from the anchorage. The approach is from the north taking the most easterly inlets as various skerries guard the entrance. The electronic charts are useless but 71 05.046N 25 39.152W proved a safe waypoint for us with an approach depth of not less than 20m.

70 57.462N 28 3.865W

We had difficulty in finding a good place to anchor here but it is a beautiful place surrounded by red mountains and ice bergs galore. A walk ashore to the hill overlooking the calving glacier at the head of the fjord gives a perfect panorama. Plenty of Musk Ox around and a Great Northern Diver.
We entered a narrow creek trying to find shelter from ice bergs but found it too deep to anchor until the bottom came up suddenly to rocks which we hit at 2.3m. We eventually anchored further east and found good holding but a lot of rocks reducing swinging room. We had to scout around with the dinghy and sounder to find the best spot but it was still precarious.

71 18.076N 24 54.96W

We were advised to anchor inside the island but we found poor holding there and insufficient swinging room so anchored off the low shore to the east which, unfortunately for us, became a lea shore in the early morning so we had to leave quickly. We tried too to anchor off the huts at Sydkap itself but found the bottom shelved far too steeply to allow for swinging

Roumer fjord south of Turner Island
68 43.704N 23 41.267W

Anchor off the hot beach at the entrance of Roumerfjord south of Turner Island. We found reasonable holding 140 metres off the beach with the steaming fumaroles and two excellent hot bathing pools. There was a tidal current and we had to be prepare to fend off bergs. There is a hunter's hut with "Qualaativaaje Ittua" written on the roof. Obviously a lot of hunting goes on here with whale and seal bones ashore as well as spent ammunition. Wonderful flora (flowering sedum) around the hot pools and elsewhere. Arid volcanic mountains with a basalt headland protecting the inner fjord from swells.