Today is Departure Day! The day began with a very early start (6am!) as students and staff loaded onto busses and we made our way to the Ottawa airport. However, the excitement in the air was palpable as we boarded our flights and officially began our journey to the Arctic.
Full of new knowledge and the beginnings of wonderful friendships, our Arctic 2019 students are ready for the journey ahead!
Today will be a long day of travel, first to Iqaluit to refuel, and then on to Kangerlussuaq where we will make our way to the expedition vessel, participate in important safety drills, and set sail!
See below for our first video update from Expedition Leader (and President of the Students on Ice Foundation) Geoff Green!
And follow our journey as we connect to the land, culture and people of the Arctic, to one another, and the knowledge and experiences shared each day. You can follow along on our website as well as on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram!
End of day update!
The expedition team arrived safely in Greenland and made their way to shore to load into Zodiacs. These are inflatable boats will be used throughout expedition for transferring students and staff between the ship and shore, to explore glaciers and icebergs more closely and a platform for engaging in ocean based science!
This was the first time in a Zodiac for many and a fun experience! But the team was most excited about boarding the expedition vessel, our ‘floating classroom’ for the next two weeks, Adventure Canada’s MS Ocean Endeavour.
Charlotte Saunders from Kangiqsualujjuaq, Québec said her legs were shaking with excitement after she boarded the ship and she felt like she had come home.
Once onboard, students and staff wandered the decks, exploring their new home. Jason Gomez of New York said the experience of finally getting to walk around on the ship was better than anything he imagined!
After a pre-dinner snack, an important safety drill and a buffet dinner, students gathered into their first pod briefings in the room we call the “Hub” (the main gathering space for full team briefings and presentations). Here they were introduced to seven new staff members from Greenland, and they were treated to a bedtime story courtesy of elder and award-winning author Arvaarluk Kusugak.
Everyone was then off to bed, very tired but excited for the adventure ahead. During the routine evening curfew check, several students exclaimed “This was the best day of my life!” We know this is just the start of many incredible days and we look forward to sharing the journey with you!
Check back for updates from the team’s first full day of workshops and adventure in Itilleq Fjord, Greenland.
Bill Pan, student
Richmond, BC, Canada
Today (July 25) is the first day on the ship. It was a long day of travelling from Ottawa all the way to Greenland. We took almost all possible forms of transportation except for train. We left Ottawa early this morning and flew from Ottawa to Greenland, and briefly stopping in Iqaluit, Nunavut for refueling. Once we got to Greenland, we came off the plane, took a short bus ride and got on a zodiac. The zodiac then took us to the ship that we will call home for the next two weeks: Ocean Endeavour. It is amazing to be this far up north, the scenery is very different from what I am used to. Here in Greenland, there are vast mountains of bare rock and it is quite windy. After we got on the ship we got settled and set sail.
So far, it has been an amazing adventure and it is just getting started. Today was a day full of travelling and the previous two days were spent visiting Ottawa and Camp Fortune. I have been able to meet many people from around the world and different cultures. I look forward for the journey to continue!