Ollys Turn

Mike Jaques
Fri 5 Aug 2022 21:35
66:20.71 N 34:58.67 W
I fear Gringo, Tim and Alistair have set a fairly high level in terms of Blog writing, so its my turn to bring that level down to where it should be. My one goal here is write this quicker then it took Gringo to write his, which shouldn’t be hard as it took him almost half a day whilst we were navigating the ice north on a particularly cold day.... I know, he’s cleverer then he looks!!
I’m currently writing this from a beautiful fjord called Tugtilik, we are surround by mountains and the most amazingly sculpted icebergs which are aground and keeping any smaller bits of ice from clogging up our anchorage. The only noises are from waterfalls, the occasional explosion echoing around the fjord as one of the icebergs decides to shed some weight or break in half or the high pitched whine of a military grade mosquito going past your ear and the subsequent clap as it meets its untimely end. Tugtilik is a Y shaped fjord where the right hand fork ends in a spectacular looking glacier with a high calving front to it and the left hand fork ends in a gently shallowing rocky beach with a river flowing from a lake further up the valley.
This fjord has quite a lot of history as it is where the famous explorer Gino Watkins stationed his second expedition to Greenland in the 1930’s after his first very successful British Arctic Air Route Expedition (which everyone should read about). It is also where tragically Gino died quite early on in the expedition when he went hunting for seal on his own below the glacier. All that was found was his canoe floating on its own and his trousers and kayak belt on a nearby ice flow. All that is left today is Ginos memorial on a spectacular headland overlooking the fjord and out to sea and at the end of left hand branch of the fjord are the remains of their base, hut and boat which in all honesty is just a pile of fire wood but you can just about tell how it was all laid out.
That's the history part ticked and done, now back to the adventuring.
Mike and Alistair picked out a good looking peak when we arrived on the first day in the new anchorage which they set off for at about 11.30am after the fog had lifted. A good scramble up an interesting ridge was had until they reached a section below the summit which required a bit more equipment then the two nuts they had between them (ill leave that joke to the reader). So they turned around and named the route unfinished business.
Down at sea level Gringo kindly decided to be on boat duty and from what I understand was doing his best impression of Mrs Doubtfire as the music was on loud, the boat was hoovered and spotless and a very impressive and tasty fruit cake had been baked. The less said about my attempted sponge cake the better as it would have probably been quite an effective anchor so I tip my hat to Gringo.
Tim, Chris and myself decided to go fishing. Whilst having a little walk around earlier we had seen some fish jumping in the river and we knew from reading about Ginos expedition that they were catching Salmon in the river. So with Tim and I manning the fishing rods and Chris providing cover from any sneaky bears we started our assault on the river.
Much to everyone's surprise Tim caught a very good size Salmon with in 10 minutes of starting. This obviously got the excitement levels up and so started a slow walk up the river towards the lake trying to find the best spot and trying out different lures and spinners. The next fish was caught by me and was possibly the smallest fish I've ever seen so back in it went. Fearing I was going to be on the receiving end of that evenings jokes I decided I wasn't going back to the boat until i had caught something more substantial. We made our way back to the mouth of the stream and with great relief I finally caught one. We returned to the boat with three salmon and Tim cooked them up amazingly to end a great day.
I’m going to rush this bit as this has already taken me an embarrassingly long time to write. Today has basically been a more successful replica of yesterday. Alistair, Tim, Gringo and Chris decided to go and give Unfinished business another crack with a bit more equipment and a few more nuts this time, I decided to go fishing again and Mike was on boat duty.
In conclusion Unfinished Business has now become Finished Business and it sounds like the guys have had a really good day out with amazing views gifted out over our area. I managed to hook 4 decent sized salmon with in an hour of starting. Deciding that was enough and with great smugness I radioed Mike for a pick up who as soon as he heard of the success decided he wanted a bit of the action, so back to the spot we went. We returned to the boat an hour later with 9 salmon and now a very full freezer. We are both in agreement that fishing is good fun when its going well...
We are going to stay in this area for the next few days, we have a mountain objective for tomorrow and we are going to wait out some weather that's inbound on Sunday with either a view to getting further north maybe or staying here and getting a few more objectives ticked off.
Dinners ready and I’m at my mental capacity so that's all for now.