The heliski area is on the East Coast in a region named Angmagssalik. This region sits just below the arctic circle and has a number of small villages including Kulusuk which is our heliski base. The mountain ranges are between large fiords coming off the Greenland ice cap. The highest peaks in the region top 2000 meters but generally most of the mountains are around 1000 meters and rise directly from the ocean. The fiords are mostly ice filled and the surrounding ocean is pack ice making the region only accessible by boat in the summer months after the ice breaks up.
The skiing is on the satellite islands formed as the Icecap has retreated leaving an archipelago of granite islands. The ski runs usually start from the peaks and are between 800 meters and 1100 meters long. The terrain is spectacular, skiing down toward large icebergs and picking on the water’s edge is what makes this region unique. Every day we try to venture somewhere different as we work our way back up the fiords or explore different islands and sometimes close to small Inuit Villages in the region.
Spring is the best time to visit this region as there is more snow on the glaciers and the snow pack is usually well settled resulting in less avalanche hazard. The weather is also more settled and with longer days, even during storms there are more possibilities to get out. This is one of the most spectacular places on earth and in spring when the ice breaks up the contrast with the blue ocean, snow, icebergs, and mountains is simply amazing! Coming to Greenland it is all about the visual experience and the opportunity to visit one of the best arctic landscapes on the planet.
Getting to Greenland
Access to the East Coast of Greenland is via Iceland. There are many international connections to Keflavik International airport which is 40 minutes from Reykjavik, the main centre in Iceland. From Keflavik International airport we fly to Kulusuk International airport which is a 1:45 minute flight. Guests have a choice of staying near Keflavik airport or travelling an hour to Reykjavik where there are more hotel and restaurant options. It is worth schedulling time in Iceland and visiting Reykjavik.
There are only two flights to Kulusuk per week so you need to make sure that you are in Keflavik on time for your departure.
Given the location the hotel Kulusuk is a comfortable hotel with good facilities. We are just below the arctic circle and ships only have access in the summer months. It is an extremely harsh environment and the hotel has weathered many a good storm. The hotel is reasonably basic but provides a warm, comfortable environment and the outlook from the rooms and dining facility is world class. It is hard to rely on fresh food but our chef “Shelly Paul” who previously worked for CMH heliskiing does a great job with what she has available.
There is wireless internet however it is not fast but works for e-mails etc. Please download your Netfix movies before you come to Greenland! The hotel serves Greenlandic craft beer and has a good wine selection. There an outside sauna with an amazing view. All food and accommodation are included but you will need to pay for alcoholic beverages at the hotel and any optional tours like dog sledding etc.
Our Helicopters are supplied by www.greenlandcopter.com who have a very new fleet of B3 Eurocopter helicopters. Tim Nicolaisen the chief pilot and owner of Greenlandcopter is a local from Tasilaq and is very familiar with the region. We are lucky to have a very good mountain pliots who are also knowlegable about the regions we ski and are fun to spend time with.
Weather and Snow Conditions
Greenland weather systems can vary from season to season and we routinely hear about the extremes in relation to climate change. Over the past 19 years of operation we have seen a wide range of climatic conditions. We have always had plenty of snow in the region and every season to date has been a success. On average we have been able to get out on 4.5 days per week. We do have non-flying days when we have to rely on ski touring, and we do sometimes get storms that don’t allow us to leave the hotel! The weather can prevent flights in and out of Kulusuk.
We ski a variety of different snow conditions! We do get powder snow and we do have amazing spring skiing conditions which are very reliable. When the conditions are right, we have the best spring corn on earth!