We arrived at the KISS building (Kangerlussuaq International Science Support) on August 19th and needed to layover until August 22nd to catch the last south bound flight on the C-130.

The LC-130: Our 'taxi' home

Kangerlussuaq is found in western Greenland and is located on the northeast end of the Sondre Stromfjord. Kangerlussuaq was founded in 1941 by the establishment of an U.S. air force base.

Sugarloaf in the background

Staying at the KISS building is a wild experience. It is a dormitory layout and there are scientists coming and going all the time. Jason, Alia and I were hoping to drive out to the ice sheet. Kangerlussauq is home to the longest road in Greenland - 25 kilometers. It is the only place where you can actually drive to the Greenland ice sheet and then upon the ice sheet! The road was built in 2000 to test Volkswagen vehicles in harsh climates. As we were chatting, a researcher overheard our conversation and mentioned that he would be going out that way to test some sensors. We were invited to tag along.

The road out to the ice sheet

The next afternoon, we joined hydrologist, Lincoln Pitcher from UCLA and his friends and piled in a run-down Toyota pickup. The ride out to the ice sheet was wild. The road is not paved and at times we were driving on the river bed. It took as at least an hour to make our way out to the ice sheet.

Lincoln Pitcher

Lincoln and his team are studying the discharge rates of the fresh water rivers coming off of the ice sheet. Today, he was setting up his equipment and then returning the following day to camp for 2 nights to collect the data. Lincoln studies the melting water streams on top of the ice sheet as well.

Tools used by Lincoln

Apparatus that will support the device that is suspended across the river

As usual, I was once again treated to the most intense, spectacular scenery.

Glacier

Mountain sorrel - so yummy to eat!

Lincoln could not wait to share the musk ox skull

The colors of the tundra - can you see the caribou trail?

Can you see the new moraine on the left coming over the older moraine?

You can no longer drive onto the ice sheet because of the retreat of the glacier and the newly formed moraines. Because walking out to the ice sheet is such a tourist attraction, they actually plow a foot path through the moraine. There were no foot paths for me through Moraine-ville or Moraine Hellgate Highway! Actually, I preferred it that way.

Paved path to walk over the moraine to the ice sheet

The weather got quite nasty when we reached the ice sheet so our visit was short.

Can you make out Alia on the ice sheet?

glacier

Newly formed moraines

The beauty of ice

On our way back to town, we passed a hunting camp and of all things, a military golf course.

Hunting camp

golf course

Lincoln and his team were so generous to explain what they are researching and wanted people to understand what is happening here at Greenland. That has been my experience all week; the scientists have wanted me to share their field of expertise and to get the word out to the general public. They have been so appreciative of the work that I am trying to do. I hope I do them justice!

Date
Weather Summary
Cool and cloudy
Temperature
45 degrees F

Comments

IMSOwenD

Dear Mrs.CI noticed that some of the photos you took there was a glacier background but a green grassy foreground. Was there a different temperature between the two?

Tina Ciarametaro

I reported the temperature in Fahrenheit because the US uses that system. The rest of the industrialized world, except for Liberia, Burma and the US, uses Celsius.

Tina Ciarametaro

Thule has an Air Force base and so does Kangerlussauq. I stayed in Kangerlussauq after coming out of the field. Cool plane to ride home in!

IMSNateF

I noticed that the LC-130 was a military flight. Was it out of Thule Air Force Base in Greenland?

steven kenney

what is the temperature in Celsius, or Fahrenheit? depending on what system they use?

IMSWILLM

What time do you go to bed/what time do you wake up?

Tina Ciarametaro

I usually get up by six am and go to bed around 10. It is a bit tricky at night, because it is not really dark out.

IMSCassidyK

While you were in Greenland was very cold? If so what did you wear every day? From these pictures and some journal entries, it looks very icy and frozen. What Jackets or other items would keep you warm in such freezing temperatures?

IMSLaurenK

Hi Mrs. Ciarametaro! By looking at all of your pictures, Greenland really does look like an astonishing place to visit some day with all of its natural beauty around. Since you are just about departing today, how was the overall trip as a whole? Was it a crazy adventure to do, or do you regret one of your specific choices made while on your journey? Either way, all of your choices seem so exciting to visit and see, expessualy all of that glowing ice and the light colors on the mountains, just so pretty. Have a safe trip home, and see you on the 2nd!

IMSSydneyD

Hi Mrs.C, I hope you had a fun trip so far! I was curious with all of your data collections, will you give the data to a big corporation or was this for your teams knowledge? Also, will you have us doing work on your trip when we come back to school? I hope you enjoy your last day in Greenland!

IMS Isaiah M

what type of animals do you see there that you won't see at ipswich

IMSFaithP

Can you explain why the ice has a blue appearance?

Tina Ciarametaro

IMSCassidyK,The temperature ranged from 40-65; mostly in the 40s. We wore layers of clothing to keep warm. You don't want to sweat because when the body gets wet then you feel cold. So, layers when we begin to hike and as we warmed up, we would take off layers.

Tina Ciarametaro

IMSLaurenK,words can begin to describe this experience. I am having a bit of a time adjusting to the chaos of daily lifeā€¦Last night was the first time I saw darkness in 3 weeks and my home seemed so loud last night when I was trying to sleep. I have so many ideas that I want to try in school this year! Thanks for following along!
On

Tina Ciarametaro

The data will be used by the Ph. D and Master's students at Univ. at Buffalo. They are both working on projects. I am hoping that they will come over sometime during the school year to explain their findings. I have so many ideas that I want to try in the classroom. I wish we had 3 hours of science each day and we could go hiking!

Tina Ciarametaro

We saw an arctic hare, caribou, rocky ptarmigan, snow buntings, loons, falcons, wheatears,siberian wolf spiders and gnats.

IMSEmilyP

Hi Mrs. CIn your pictures the area looks very diverse in climate/scenery. For example, some parts are very snowy and others are more grassy. Was there a distinct temperature change between the snowy areas and the grassy areas?

IMS Stephen M

Hi Mrs. Ciarametaro, I saw the picture of the animal skull and was curious about what type of animal it was. To me it seemed to be a caribou or some kind of arctic deer like creature that lives in greenland but I was wondering what it was exactly.

Rayna Duffield

Do you think that mountain Sorrel is a key plant in this environment? If it was to die and no more of it grew do you think that would affect anything about the ecosystem?

IMSRaynaD

Hi Mrs. Ciarametaro, I didn't mean to post two this is the real one. Do you think that mountain sorrel is a key plant to the environment? If it happened to die do you think it would affect the ecosystem. IMSRaynaD

Tina Ciarametaro

The ice appears blue because it is so dense and the ice absorbs every other color except blue - which it reflects

Tina Ciarametaro

Dear IMSEmilyP,there wasn't a big temperature change - some areas had been exposed longer and therefore, soil had developed. Other areas had just recently been exposed by receding glaciers so there had not been enough time to establish plant life.

Tina Ciarametaro

Dear IMSStephenM,it was a musk ox that a hunter had killed. He left the remains in the tundra so that the earth could make use of the nutrients.

Tina Ciarametaro

As with any ecosystem, the removal or introduction of a species causes an imbalance to that ecosystem. One thing that mountain sorrel provides is Vitamin C which is limited in the diets of those who live in the arctic.