Greenland, variously described as ‘Europe’s North-western Frontier’ and ‘North America’s most Easterly point’ (Wikipedia describes it as: “physiographically a part of the continent of North America (but) politically and culturally associated with Europe”), is of course famous for its glaciers, snow, and for generally not being very green to look at.
It’s also an amazing spring ski-touring and heli-skiing destination (the pictures used here were taken by Hans Solmssen who runs spring Heliski trips here each year), it’s also good for dog sledding and polar bear or iceberg watching, and the northern lights look amazing from there.
What Greenland has lacked though, so far, is much of a developed ski infrastructure. There are reported to be a few drag lifts for use by the island’s scattered population of around 56,000, close to the main settlements, but no one really goes to Greenland on a ski holiday expecting to be able to jump on a high speed quad chairlift to be whisked up the slopes.
Even coming to ski on the various drag lifts takes a bit of effort in mid-winter.
That may be about to change though with reports that staff from the Disko Island Ski Club have been in talks with an Austrian ski resort design business to develop a plan for Greenland’s first ‘proper’ ski resort.
The plans so far published envisage a ski centre with four lifts to begin with and about 20km of groomed piste, growing to a larger centre served by nine lifts at build out.
Disko Island is located off the West coast of Greenland mainland, across Baffin Bay from Canada, it has a permanent population of just over 1,000, so presumably the plan is to mostly bring in skiers to use the new resort?
It is located within the Arctic circle, on a similar latitude to ‘spring skiing capital Riksgransen in northern Sweden, and the location is reported to have year-round snow cover and a glacier which would feature a year-round cross country ski loop.
With one of the big attractions of Greenland for some of those who have journeyed there to ski it being its pristine nature and magnificent isolation, skiers may be relieved to hear that the plan is for an environment-friendly ski area. No snowmaking will be required to guarantee snow cover, according to reports.