MANIITSOQ, GREENLAND

Greenland has perhaps the most dramatic landscape anywhere in the world! Craggy fjords host huge peaks that tower above the arctic ocean. Epic ski lines go right down to the coast, where icebergs and whales dot the liquid horizon. Simply put, a heli and/or touring trip should be on every skier’s bucket list — it is a dream world. Greenland is HUGE, yet there are very few inhabited places due to the extent of snow and ice. Maniitsoq is an island in the SW; the town is the sixth largest in Greenland and has fewer than 3,000 inhabitants.

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LODGING and PACKAGE: In Maniitsoq we have a choice of basing on land or sea! Ultra-luxury has not yet hit Greenland, but on land the Hotel Maniitsoq overlooks the bay and offers private or double rooms with excellent food and fast internet access. On sea, we call the boat Kisaq home as we float amazing fjords and access super remote terrain. Either way, you are guaranteed the trip of a lifetime. Here are some highlights:

  • When we base out of Hotel Maniitsoq we generally operate with 12 guests, which is three heli groups.
  • When we base out of the boat Kisaq, we operate with 8 guests, which is two heli groups.
  • Length of Trips: Typical packages in Greenland are a week.
  • All food is included, but alcohol is a separate deal. Alcohol is expensive in Greenland, but there is plenty to go around if you want it! The food is very good in general; the fresh caught fish (maybe caught by you!) and other seafood is incredible.
  • Side activities include: ski touring, sea kayaking, wake boarding, whale watching, deep sea fishing, speed boat tours, massages, and good old “chillaxing.”
  • Cost: Contact me directly to talk about package details and costs.
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TRAVEL: Travel to Greenland can be a little involved, but there are changes happening and there may be more direct options in the near future. For now, travel is generally from Copenhagen (Denmark) to Greenland’s international airport at Kangerllussuaq (about 4 1/2 hrs), then on a domestic leg to Maniitsoq (under an hour). Due to flight schedules, we generally stay overnight in Copenhagen on both ends of the trip.

SEASON: The season for heliskiing in Greenland is April and May.

BOOKING: Greenland is such an amazing place and not many people get to heli ski there. As a result, there is a pretty competitive booking process. Contact me to talk about your ideal dates and what is available on the calendar for this coming season and the one following — most dates book about a year in advance, if not more. It’s smart to book way in advance to ensure you get the dates you want, and to have that STOKE on the books!!

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TERRAIN AND SNOW QUALITY: The mountains near Maniitsoq are incredible. While the interior of Greenland is a massive, essentially flat ice sheet, the coastline has an endless supply of craggy peaks that offer a dizzying array of ski opportunities. The seemingly unlimited ski runs we do average 3,000 vertical feet, with the highest local peak standing proud at over 6,000′. Much of the skiing we do offers continuous sea views, and many runs end literally on the shoreline! And there is something for virtually all ability levels – from wide open low angle slopes to steep faces and couloirs. It’s an amazing experience to ski 3,000 vertical feet directly down to the coast of the Davis Strait (!), directly across from Baffin Island… only to get picked up by a helicopter for another run! You are out there!

Like any mountains you can ski on, the snow quality is variable over time and there are no guarantees. That said, April and May in Greenland tend to offer a mix of everything from cold powder to primo spring corn, sometimes both on the same day! April does tend to be colder, which can mean better chances for powder, but that is a generalization.

HELI / GUIDE STAFF: I work with a small, awesome team of guides who have been heliskiing in Greenland since 2000. They know this place well and I feel truly fortunate to work with them. The pilots are very experienced in the mountains who take the prime directive of “safety first” very seriously. We only fly in A-Star B3s, which are the very best helicopters for small group heli skiing. On the boat Kisaq, the captain has been navigating these waters for decades. Together, we all focus on safety and delivering the best possible experiences for our guests!

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SAFETY:  Safety is always my primary concern, regardless of location, and I’m very careful when it comes to choosing who I work with! In Greenland, we have top notch pilots and boat captains, the best helicopters, and a very experienced guide staff. Together, we make safety the priority all day every day. When injuries do occur, guides have basic medical equipment in their backpacks, with more advanced medical equipment on the helicopter. In the unlikely case of serious injury in the field, we stop everything and focus on getting the injured party to an appropriate medical facility. Maniitsoq has a modern hospital. The doctors are European and offer the same standard of care as provided in European countries.

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