Monday July 28 – Tuesday July 29, 2014 (72o 58’N, 76o 17’W): Bylot Island
After refueling and resupplying, we left Upernavik, Greenland Friday afternoon July 25th and dropped anchor 3 days later in a bay north of Cape Graham Moore on Bylot Island, Canada. The trip across Baffin Bay started with ideal sailing conditions, finishing with 15 hours of motoring in calm seas. The sun remained obscured by clouds and fog for the full crossing. Since leaving Saint Mary’s Labrador in early July, we have seen less than three days of sunshine while underway. Fortunately, whether by luck or the effect of land, our harbor stays have included clear skies and sunshine. True to this trend, the skies cleared as we approached Bylot. On approach, the mountains, that from a distance had reminded me of the Rockies, were seen to be less solid, with a brownish appearance and piles of coarse rocks eroded and washed down from the mountain tops. Two small glaciers were off to our left as we entered, and at the head of the harbor was a large glacier that had receded miles from the water’s edge. As we motored up into the bay, the water became cloudy to the point of opaque. Oddly, our wake created a trail of clear water aft as it churned through the silt. We dropped anchor near to where the glacial flow entered the bay.
With sunshine, we opened up the boat from bow to stern to allow the air to flow through. Peter pulled out the full sixty feet of the spinnaker and snaked it on deck to give it a chance to dry out. And mainly we enjoyed the magnificent view and a break from moving. After a good night sleep, we reviewed the latest ice chart sent from Dick Hiatt back in Huntsville, to judge if the ice blocking nearby Pond Inlet was breaking up so we could go refuel. Despite our hopes, the charts indicated that Pond Inlet would not clear in the near future. Given the odds, we have decided to head to Dundas Harbor on Lancaster Sound, 140 mile to the north.