South Greenland - Day 6 : A hole in the fog
In the morning it was freezing and foggy. My route passed through soggy and hilly terrain. All the fog resulted in a nice ambience, but also made it harder to navigate. Of course my GPS directed me in the right direction, but walking in location X or only 100 meters to the left or right usually made a huge difference. A few times I thought I was going in the right direction to, after 10 minutes of stumbling uphill, realize there was a nearly flat canyon running in the same direction 100 meters away but shrouded in fog. The resolution of the map was simply not large enough to see the smaller hills. The fog also made all the rocks slippery, luckily I only fell once, but it was hard. Better to do it right the first time I guess. Later there was more swamp and fog, mixed with drizzle and cold winds. By now I was walking straight north to a large glacial lake called Hullet, which means hole in Danish. The route was level so I could walk fast. Near the hole it was even colder and foggier. I could only see a few meters ahead of me. I noticed the lake's edge, but as it was cold I walked a bit further to take shelter behind a large boulder. Only when the wind briefly picked up did I notice a much larger lake and figured that must be Hullet. Behind a rock I sent a GPS signal home and started lunch: a mix of nuts. Halfway through I realized lunch could wait until the weather was better. It was important to eat enough, but despite my waterproof and insulated clothes it was too cold to sit down for long periods of time.
[Only later, when I was writing this story in my warm tent, did I realize that none of the two lakes I had seen were Hullet, instead it lay a few hundred meters further east. It didn't really matter, as it was way too foggy to see anything anyway.]
The few kilometers after that passed through the same valley as the way there. The fog started to clear very slowly but it continued to rain the entire day. I arrived at a lake which shore was marked as a swamp on the map. The description of the route typically consisted of only 2-3 sentences a day, so things like this were only mentioned if the conditions were horribly bad. The first few kilometers weren't worse than the other swamps I had walked through and I started to wonder if it might have dried up in recent years. Soon I discovered it hadn't. Everywhere I stood my feet would sink by 30 cm over the course of a few seconds. That did mean I had to walk fast and as a result covered a lot of ground quickly. After the swamp I reached the edge of Kuukuluup Tasia, a huge glacial lake which I would follow for the next 15 kilometers. Along the way I would also pass 4 Inuit ruins. I had seen pictures of other Greenlandic ruins on the internet. Those were just a bunch of rocks 20 cm high. Despite a much searching I didn't find the first ruin. Because of the rain and fog I couldn't see the entire lake, but it was still beautiful. I did see the glacier calving and dozens of iceberg floating. Normally places like those are filled with tourist busses and hot dog stands, so to be there all by myself felt really special.
I passed Inuit ruin 2, which also was nowhere to be seen. A few kilometers later I stopped next to ruin number 3. I also couldn't distinguish that one, everywhere the rocks looked the same. Between the glacier lake, icebergs, rain, and fog it wasn't very warm, so I got enough water for the night and locked myself in my tent.
The ruin (according to my GPS)
In my tent, I heard a low rumble from the calving icebergs every 5 minutes or so. I again didn't encounter anyone this day (day 4). I did see some footprints, but had no clue how long they had been there. The following day I would first have to climb a reasonable amount, during which I hoped to get a nice view over the lake. I hoped the weather would get better. After writing this day's story, I felt I needed to take some more photos, just in case the weather would be even worse the next day. I had already taken my clothes off, but as nobody was around I went outside in my underwear. Not everyone can say they photographed Greenlandic icebergs in their underwear.