Icebergs and Fjords and Wind, OH MY!

Today's been a full day of flying and many "did you see that?" exclamations. The flight out of Halifax was beautiful and we quickly got over the cloud layer to sunny blue skies. 

One day, I'd like to keep track of some of the FBO's (fixed base operations) we visit when flying. These are the businesses that provide service points, comfort stops, fuel supplies, pilot planning opportunities and passenger lounge areas to general aviation. Each of them is unique. Some have the bare minimum of services, some are equipped with anything you could wish for, and some are cozy and welcoming. Irving Aviation took great care of us in Goose Bay, Labrador, and Kelly made sure we had everything we needed, including delicious boxed lunches to eat en route.

It was the next leg that had me a bit, hmmmm.... alert. For more information on why I was keen to get to ground in Greenland, see this link by Travis of Shepherd Aero about flying this route, and how it can be a bit complicated. There have been just a couple of discussions of the trip that have given my stomach a bit of a clench....and this leg was one of them. Weather conditions, lack of radar, and lots of air traffic to and from Europe are attention getting....but it was the anticipation of landing at Narsarsuaq that made me very keen. I knew the deep granite ground would rise up between fjords on our descent, and the winds would be high. The forecast was good, but weather is .... unpredictable. Not surprisingly Julian handled the landing like a pro and we had good visual conditions....and still that rock coming up to meet us was a shock to me! That's when my "wows" started and then continued when we saw many small (but mighty) blocks of ice in the water below, and a couple of genuine icebergs! I'm from Winnipeg originally and have spent time in northern Manitoba, but I've never seen these floating ice bits before. And the color where ice met water! It was like seeing into the hidden magic of gemstones.....some kind of dark translucent turquoise. It was all a wow!!

We sat in the lounge area at Narsarsauq to wait our turn for clearance, watching helicopters and planes plow into the high winds, and then took off smoothly - heading to Iceland. Once again, once we got over the cloud layer with just a bit of rain the skies were beautifully clear and our trip over the water to Keflavik was lovely. The taxi driver who took us to the hotel welcomed us by telling stories of the difference between night trolls and day trolls and the current state of volcanoes in the country. We stayed in the Northern Lights Inn close to the airport and right beside the famous Blue Lagoon. Julian and I had had an earlier opportunity to visit Iceland and enjoy the waters there but there was no time tonight (with the time change we arrived after nine pm). Travis had sung the praises of the in house restaurant, Max's, and I must say the Wolf Fish au gratin was ridiculously delicious! It wasn't hard to go right to sleep after our long "in the air" day and a great dinner, lulled by the sound of steam from the lagoon and the cool night air.

Tomorrow -- Shannon, Ireland