|Latest News Tuesday, June 16, 1998
It's a warm day in Greenland and with rocks crumbling on the peaks, the climbers decided to call it an expedition and soak up sun and views on their last day in base. With six solid climbs under their blistered feet, they're pleased with the trip and are hoping the plane will come for them tomorrow.
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Among the Last of the Wild Frontiers
Greenland is predominantly an ice cap with a rugged mountain chain which runs north to south up the east coast. Mount Gunnbjornsfjeld (12,116'; 68° 55'06"N, 29° 53'54"W), the highest mountain in Greenland, is located on the central part of the east coast, approximately 30 miles inland from the sea. The climbers will attempt a summit of Mt. Gunnbjornsfjeld, one or two other ascents in the area, and a possible first ascent.
The ascent of Gunnbjornsfjeld will take approximately four to five days. Travel on the glacier will be on mountaineering skis and the transport of gear will be accomplished with sleds and backpacks. All routes will be climbed in alpine style with camps moved on each day of the ascent. The climbing is moderate with some steeper sections of 40° to 45°. The climbers will be living on glaciers the entire time they are in Greenland with temperatures ranging from -10° to 30° Fahrenheit.
After climbing Gunnbjornsfjeld, the climbers will use aerial photos and information gathered from previous expeditions to explore the surrounding glacier valleys. Their goal will be to find new mountaineering objectives which fit their climbing skills. Many of these peaks have never been climbed, and they hope to summit two or more of them.
Day 3: Board ski equipped Twin Otter aircraft and begin the three hour crossing of the Straight of Denmark. After landing on the glacier, they will ski for a few hours to base camp.
Day 4 to 12: The climbers will first attempt Mount Gunnbjornsfjeld (12,116'; 68° 55'06"N, 29° 53'54"W) which will take approximately four to five days. They will then pick three to four unclimbed peaks and study possible new routes hoping to ascend at least two of these routes. If there is extra time and the weather is good, they may attempt an ascent of Mount Kershaw (12,079'; 68° 50'22"N, 29° 55'24"W), the second highest peak in Greenland. This peak was named after Giles Kershaw, a well known Arctic and Antarctic pilot and explorer.
Day 13: Fly back via Twin Otter to Akureyri, Iceland.
Day 14: Fly from Akureyri to Reykjavik and then on to the USA.
Gordon Janow, Alpine Ascents Program Coordinator
[click to zoom] (photo: Alpine Ascents Collection)
(photo: Art Wolfe)
|Todd Burleson, Director and founder of Alpine Ascents International, has achieved unparalleled success in the mountain guiding industry and is considered to be one of the top climbers in the world. Todd spent most of his childhood in Alaska where his prowess and love for mountaineering was developed. In his sixteen years of climbing, he has led seven expeditions to Mt. Everest (summitting twice) and has led successful expeditions on every continent.
Alpine Ascents International, Inc.