on Erik's Fjord (Tunuliarfik Fjord)
We landed at the airport in Narsarsuak.
It was built by the US as a secret airbase during World War II.
In all of Greenland no place was more important to the success
of the Allied Forces than that base. Here's an interestings website
created by John Stott, an American who served there: Narsarssuak Air Base
(Bluie West One). He told me he was
stationed there in 1959-1951.
Greenlandic weather reports also
played an important part in World War II. Here is the story of
Coast Guard and the Greenland Patrol
by John Tilley.
But I was far more captivated by
the earlier age of the Norsemen. After boarding two speedboats
we began a two-hour trip down the Tunuliarfik fjord to Narsaq.
There are no roads between the towns in Greenland. The fjord
is also called Erik's fjord because it was settled by Erik the
Red, Leif Erikson's father. Directly across the fjord from the
airport is the location of the main Norse settlement. As part
of my trip preparations I had watched several Hollywood Viking
movies and was really looking forward to experiencing an actual
fjord where the long ships had explored a thousand years before.
I even went so far as to bring along some old Norse-style items
of clothing including a replica of an 11th century Icelandic
Thor's hammer pendant to wear when we were out exploring (click
on images below). Maybe those items would somehow bring good
weather luck. And after all, we were going "Viking" or at least I was!