The View from Fortune Bay

August 1, 2019

Fortune Bay, Disko Island

69 15N 53 45W

One cannot have too many books aboard. By way of a proof: this morning I would like to know why my anchorage on S Disko Island is named Fortune Bay. I can guess it is something to do with whaling, but not a single volume on the shelf answers the question, and the only hint comes from Andrew Wilkes in his sailing directions, ARCTIC AND NORTHERN WATERS:

“Fortune Bay is a ragged bight with many islands and rocks, lying 5 miles W of [the village of] Qeqertarsuaq. Many of the islets have sledge dogs stranded on them for the summer. Kangerluarssuk, the inlet at the E end of the bay, provides a landlocked anchorage.”

Mo lies in the Kangerluarssuk inlet, and it is indeed landlocked, a great comfort to the sailor.

Why is this so? An anchorage is considered landlocked when, from inside, you can see land in every direction; i.e. you cannot see the entrance or, more importantly, open water. Such harbors are rare and, if small enough, can be well protected from seas of any direction.

And so, maybe this is the source, the discoverer celebrating his good fortune in the naming of the place.

Yesterday’s explorations, both in the dinghy and on foot, found no stranded sledge dogs, but when the wind went S, a great fog rolled in, and then the entrance to the bay was beset by icebergs. With trepidation, I circumnavigated several in the inflatable, departing in a rush when one of them cracked with a sound like thunder.

6 Comments on “The View from Fortune Bay

  1. Oh, My Goodness, Randall!!! Those are fantastic photos of icebergs, I can only imagine what it is like to go around them in your tender!!! Or aboard MO!!!!
    Take care, and please do not go out there in the fog!! Did you feel lonely? Don’t be as we are all there right with you!

  2. Oh wow. If it weren’t for you I would have no idea.
    Thank you again.

  3. Looks like a nice safe place to sit out…..what ever is next Stay safe it looks remote.

  4. It’s getting late in the season. Will you have to wait out the (Fall) Winter before sailing across the Arctic to the Pacific? Adak was pretty nasty in November.

  5. Beauty. Happy to hear you were able to fix the rear seal and are under way. Looking forward to all that comes. Hoping the ice breaks up for you!

Leave a Reply