Diary of an ACT thru-hiker. Day 5.

Kieran joined us in September 2023 on our inaugural Greenland Arctic Circle Trail trek from the ice-sheet to the sea. He kept a written and photographic journal of his adventure, which he has kindly allowed us to share with you. Check our main blog page for Days 0-4 and daily entries following this one!

7 hikers pick their way carefully through the boggy terrain. There are sections of open water in the foreground and hills in the background. Bog cotton is buffeted by the breeze.

12/9/23 Tuesday. Day 5.

In camp.

A long day, our longest yet. Followed the lake for almost all of the day. Wet feet again. Putting cold wet socks on cold feet into cold wet boots. There’s no point in putting dry socks on, they will be wet in half an hour. The ground changes quickly, from lots of surface water to dry solid ground in the space of a few hundred metres.

There was an interesting route around boulders earlier on today, one yesterday also. Stopped for an hour and a half at 1:30pm, after 12km/five hours of walking, in the canoe centre. There was nobody else there, just some extra time to dry the tent and air the sleeping bags too.

Had a close-ish encounter with a reindeer this morning and also about 8 musk oxen. Ray spotted them towards the top of a hill on our left. I stopped and dropped the pack on a little rise just after that, got out the big lens and think I got a few shots of them but I’m not sure. Then it struck me that the rest of the group had kept walking over the next rise in the path. They were waiting for me, but for a few moments I was all alone… and I wondered what would have happened if I started walking in the other direction.

Towards the end of the day, we reached the end of the lake. We went through a boulder field, then you are there! We kept going for another couple of kilometres until we found a decent campsite near enough to the river that flows out of the lake in the same direction we were going. Got some shots of a young reindeer on the top of the ridge. Pitched the tents got water had something to eat and got into bed. It’s already well below freezing.