Practicalities – Greenland

Malemuk © Morten Beier Tropic Ice Dive

The trips normally require five divers, if we don’t get the numbers, Tropic Ice Dive can cancel the trip up to 45 days before departure.

The boats
Vega is a 50 foot Kingfisher with two x510hp Caterpillar engines and a total weight of 19,5gt. Cruising speed is 10 knots. There are four sleeping berths below deck, a toilet, a salon, 20m2 of deckspace and a big heated cargo area with plenty of space for equipment and changing clothes before and after the dives. Another three berths can be arranged in the salon. There are no showers on board, but we rarely spend more than four days at sea at a time.

Sirius is a smaller, specially designed 35foot Targa, built in Finland. She has two 310 hp-engines giving a cruising speed of 30 knots. There are six sleeping berths below deck, a toilet, a salon and good deckspace. With five passengers plus a crew of two,  space is at a premium so some self-discipline and thoughtfulness are required for the comfort of all. As we can carry only 250 litres of freshwater don’t count on a shower while on board.

Clothing – See Weather and clothing

Currency
Danish Kroner. Visa and Master Card can be used in banks and some shops.

Diving skills
A minimum of PADI AWO (coldwater certificate), CMAS** Nordic or equivalent. Also you will need to have dived in a drysuit within the last 12 months. Contact us in good time if you don’t meet these requirements. We can help you with certification and diving experience before your trip. To put you together with a suitable diving team we ask that you fill out a questionnaire on your diving experience, when you book the trip.

Electricity
230V in hotels and onboard with standard Danish 2-pin plug.

Equipment
Diving equipment is heavy, and it is not possible to stay within the limit of 20 kg checked baggage plus 8 kg carryon baggage if you bring your own equipment. Overweight is charged at approximately by roughly 100DKr/kg each way. To minimize costs we suggest you ship your equipment. See Shipping.

If you want to use your own equipment make sure it is suitable for Arctic diving. This means your regulator is frost-proof and you have a drysuit/innersuit combination suitable for water temperatures of 0-4 degrees Celsius. We strongly recommend a redundant air supply.

We bring a certain amount of reserve equipment, but if your own gear breaks down, Tropic Ice Dive and Sirius Greenland cannot be held responsible.

Excursions
World of Greenland organises excursions in Ilulissat and Sisimiut. These can be booked from home. Excursions are not included in the dive trip price.

Fishing
There are fantastic opportunities to fish whilst onboard. You need to obtain a fishing licence. There is plenty of tackle on board.

Flying
Greenlands weather is temperamental and occasionally it is not possible for planes to operate. Usually this down time lasts only a few hours, but if necessary, Air Greenland pays for accommodation, meals etc.

Food and beverage
The trip price includes food and beverages except during hotel stays, where only breakfast is included.

Insurance
Make sure you are properly insured for medical treatment and search-and-rescue assistance during your stay in Greenland. During the dive trips you are insured through Sirius Greenland in case of accident. 

Additional insurance, including trip cancellation can be bought when you make a reservation.

Midnight sun
There are between 30 (Sisimiut) and 65 (Ilulissat) days with midnight sun from the end of May to the end of July.

Motion sickness
– See Weather and clothing

Northern lights
The northern lights are present all year but are but it takes a dark sky to see it. Between August and April the nights are dark enough.

Safety
We are very conscious of safety. Therefore, we set requirements for divers. We start with a checkout dive.
 
Water temperatures are between 0 and 4 degrees Celsius and the nearest decompression chamber is in Iceland, so we do not do deco diving. 

You can choose to dive with a pony tank and an extra first stage and regulator. 

During ice dives, this is required. There is, of course,  oxygen on board.

Sea sickness
– see Weather and clothing

Shipping
To bring equipment by plane to Greenland is fairly expensive. It is a lot less expensive to send your gear by ship. The price depends on where you shipping it from. Contact Tropic Ice Dive for help. Count on at least four weeks delivery time. Equipment can be sent to following addresses:

If your trip starts from Kangerlussuaq or Sisimiut:
Sirius Greenland ApS
Postbox 32
3911 Sisimiut
Greenland
Att.: Tropic Ice Dive

If your trip starts from Ilulissat:
Hotel Icefjord
Box 458
3952 Ilulissat
Greenland
Att.: Tropic Ice Dive

Things to remember to bring
Flight tickets
Passport
Insurance
Dive certificate
Logbook
Dive equipment (NOT tanks and weights)
Dive light (or UW light)
Photo equipment
Seasickness pills
Deodorant
Sleeping bag
Mosquitonet for face
Insect repellent
Suitable clothing
Insurance

Weather and clothing
The water temperature in the area between Sisimiut and Ilulissat, although moderated by the Gulf Stream, range between 0°C (April-May) and 4°C (July-October). So you will need warm drysuit underwaer. 

Air temperatures are between 5 to 15°C in summer and –5  to -30°C in winter. Areas north of the Arctic Circle have an average temperature under 10°C year round.

Because of the low humidity temperatures feel less extreme than you might expect. It is best to have several layers of clothing: a thin breathable inner layer an insulating middle layer and a wind/waterproof outer layer. Be prepared for changeable weather. In the summer months, flies and mosquitos can be a problem. It is a good idea to bring insect repellent and a mosquitonet for your face.

There is always the chance of rough seas, so you may wish to bring along some seasickness pills. In the worst case scenario, the weather may cause the cancellation of a dive. However, most of our dive sites are sheltered and can be dived in poor weather. If a dive is cancelled, every effort will be made to find an alternative site.

Please also see general information under FAQ.

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