Between Devon Island and Ellesmere Island, a dozen of CTD casts are done
across Jones Sound (some Arctic Ocean water is going this way to the Atlantic
Ocean). In the middle of the strait, Vagabond stops and drifts, while we are
repairing the capricious winch! Happily, wind and swell are moderate.
Then, it is at the end of South Cape Fiord that we drop anchor for a rest day
before the end of the cruise. Weather is perfectly calm, tenths of narwhals
are swimming around. In fascination, we watch and listen to them for a long
time: their back are shinning in the sun, their powerful blows are echoing in
Christian was dreaming about fishing and about a glacier trip. Fishing
attempts are quite short, from the boat, but a nice trip allows everyone to
step on Sydkap Glacier, and see two arctic hares, and footprints from polar
bears, wolves, foxes and muskox.
Friday morning, sea is flat, ideal for the scientists to pack all the
equipment, while sailing, and to give us orders: icemeter, CTD, winch, and
part of the weather station are staying on board. We will follow given
protocols to do measurements all along the winter.
At the exit of South Cape Fiord, hundreds of Greenland seals, in small groups,
are swimming and jumping like dolphins. Spectacular, unforgettable. On our
way, we find a little bay well protected which could be fine to overwinter...
At the end of the day, we get a very friendly welcome in Grise Fiord. Entry
formalities to Canada are done in French, in the local office of Royal
Canadian Mounted Police, and by phone with Iqaluit authorities (Nunavut
Great meeting with Jon et Erik, from the US, they also just arrived in Grise
Fiord after 104 days expedition around Ellesmere Island: Ellesmere Island
Circumnavigation. We passed them a
few days ago, less than four mile from each other, but too much ice to gather.
Mary, Lea and Christian are still with us, because their flight was cancelled
yesterday. Airspace is closed around Resolute Bay, where was a dramatic plane