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Connecting with the Weather

In the rugged landscape of East Greenland, the unpredictable whims of weather are an integral part of life. It is about embracing the elements to experience East Greenland’s dance with nature. In this ever-changing canvas, plans are fluid, constantly evolving with the weather. As a visitor, you are beckoned into this dance – a journey shaped not by itineraries, but by the natural world itself. Here, the unpredictable weather doesn’t just set the backdrop; it becomes the adventure itself. So, when in East Greenland, expect the unexpected, embrace the ever-changing elements, and let nature guide your journey. It’s a profound experience, one that underscores the deep connection between man and nature, and the beauty of adaptability.

Unpredictable Weather Patterns

When the harsh Arctic winter or dense fog cuts off helicopter transportation, Tasiilaq and the other places on the East coast reveal their true character. This acknowledges how this society functions even if the supply ship is delayed or the helicopter cannot operate as planned. It shows how capable people are even when there is no outside world connection for days. Living in an environment where weather dictates connectivity might seem daunting for some. But the locals have found their ways to adapt and thrive, also in these kinds of situations. And so can you, if you are ready for this adventure. This reality, deeply intrigued, is going to be part of your adventure. Be ready – it determines your adventure.

Thriving against the Odds

Their life is an embodiment of human resilience, a testament to how societies can adapt to challenging conditions and continue to function harmoniously. East Greenland’s people have developed unique ways to combat the challenges posed by their climate. They embrace the elements, hunting in frigid waters, trekking through snowstorms to gather necessities, and maintaining vibrant social structures. It’s a society that doesn’t fight against its environment, but rather, works with it, marking a fascinating adaptation to the extremes of nature. Plans are made, but they may change according to the weather – a maybe or we’ll see, doesn’t mean people are not interested or eager to help you and perform a service, they are just well aware that things might change according to the weather

Flexibility and changing as a constant

Weather conditions can change fast, faster than you might expect and can be different even from one fjord to the other or look very different at the same place in the morning and the evening. Transportation by plane, helicopter or boat are not always affected in the same way by weather conditions. The presence of the nearby Greenland Ice Sheet exerts a chilly influence on the inhabitants’ way of life. Historically, it was enveloped in isolation due to the overwhelming amount of stifling pack ice found within its fjords and adjacent ocean. Brutally cold katabatic wind systems known as ‘piteraq’ have been known to surge suddenly from utter stillness to speeds reaching 40 to 80 m/s (for reference that is between 145 to 300 km/h) and sweeping down the east coast. Don’t be perplexed if your travel schedule undergoes multiple revisions owing to the capricious weather. The residents of East Greenland have honed the art of swift adaptation to shifting circumstances – a skill you would do well to acquire.

This is not an all-inclusive guide about all weather conditions possible, but a call to take the weather as part of your adventure. Because being outdoors you will encounter weather conditions and work with it not against it. You can use, DMI or YR for reliable weather information. Look at the weather forecast for maybe two days ahead and be sure to not only look for the temperature but precipitation, wind gusts and wind directions as well. When venturing out, it is always best to be prepared for any changes in conditions, which means bringing along some extra cloth and equipment.

Weather as Your Guide: Crafting Unforgettable Adventure

When you find yourself in Tasiilaq or any of the nearby communities, cut off from the world by inclement weather, you get a glimpse of East Greenland’s authentic character. You see a society that lives in harmony with its environment, adapting and thriving amidst the ever-changing, sometimes unforgiving weather conditions. This is when East Greenland reveals its true character – a society that doesn’t just endure, but thrives, against the odds. It’s in these moments, when weather serves as your itinerary, that your adventure truly begins. Weather, unpredictable yet awe-inspiring, doesn’t limit the adventure in East Greenland; it defines it. You learn to adapt, just as the people of East Greenland have. Each day becomes a new opportunity for exploration and discovery. You’ll find that, in East Greenland, the weather doesn’t interrupt the adventure, it shapes it. It’s a trip unlike any other, one that will leave you enriched and inspired. Be ready – it determines your adventure. Embrace this opportunity to disconnect and reconnect.

About the Author

Profile picture - Anna Burdenski. Photo by Filip Gielda - Visit East Greenland

Anna Burdenski is a multifaceted individual with a rich tapestry of experiences spanning across continents. Born and raised in Germany, her journey took her through the vibrant cultures of Malaysia, the charming intricacies landscapes of Denmark, and the picturesque terrains of Austria. In November 2021, Anna chose to immerse herself in the pristine beauty of Tasiilaq, East Greenland. Initially venturing into the region for a research project, her deepening connection with the land soon saw her stepping into the role of a tourism coordinator for the newly established DMO Visit East Greenland in 2023. Her deep respect for local lifestyle, combined with her diverse background and commitment to showcasing the unparalleled beauty of East Greenland, positions her perfectly as a bridge between visitors and the rich tapestry of experiences East Greenland offers. Her journey from a globe-trotter with desire to immerse herself in diverse experiences to becoming part of the community in Tasiilaq centers around the intricacies of cultures and the splendor of nature as her source of inspiration. The rhythmic dance of the boat on the waves and the glint of the sun on the ocean became her meditation, a way for her to feel at one with the surrounding environment. Being exposed to and living with the elements requires a variety of skills, acceptance and patience, which connects to the rhythms of nature and weather.

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