American Alpine Jounrna and Accidents in North American Climbing

North America, Greenland, Igdlorssuit Havn Tower, West Face, Ujarak

  • Climbs And Expeditions
  • Climb Year:
  • Publication Year: 1997

Igdlorssuit Havn Tower, West Face, Ujarak. Five climbers from Croatia (Boris Cujic, Darko Dular and Vladimir Pausic) and Slovenia (Miha Kajzelj, Igor Kalan) climbed in Igdlorssuit Havn, in south Greenland, from July 23 to August 8. We made a first ascent on Igdlorssuit Havn Tower, a striking vertical granite tower (1160 m). Its steep west wall is 800 meters high. The base of the wall is a one and a half hour walk from base camp on the sea coast.

We named our ascent on the Igdlorssuit Havn Tower’s west face Ujarak (24 pitches, VI 7+ A3), and climbed it on July 24, 25, 26, 28 and 30-31, with 400 meters of fixed rope. During the last two days, we bivied on a natural ledge, and reached the top at 1 p.m. The same day all five climbers rappelled via the line of ascent.

The rock is very good except for the upper 150 meters. The climbing crux is in the middle of the route. Belays were equipped with pegs and bolts, which served as the rappel line. The possibility exists for a bivouac at the 16th belay.

We experienced sunny days and hard, cold winds during our stay in the Igdlorssuit Havn area. Temperatures ranged from 8°-10° C (0°-2° C in the mornings). Storms came and went lazily. We climbed Igdlorssuit Havn Tower in a good weather period with two rainy days and much cold wind. On the rappel from the top it started to rain, and continued after our departure on August 8.

The Igdlorssuit Havn area is easy to reach; it is 20 kilometers via sea channels from the village of Augpilagtoq, which has a market, ambulance and post office and is connected with the town of Nanortalik via a public ship line; but it is unreachable if someone forgets to deliver the arranged rubber boat. Our expedition had the feeling that we’d been forgotten as we tried for 12 days to stop the occasional boat with SOS signals. Fortunately, the ship Ujarak was passing. …

Boris Cujic, Alpine Association of Zagreb, Croatia

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