Prince Christian Sound

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Prince Christian Sound
Prince Christian Sound is located in Greenland
Prince Christian Sound
Prince Christian Sound
Location in Greenland
LocationArctic (S Greenland)
Coordinates60°9′N 43°53′W / 60.150°N 43.883°W / 60.150; -43.883Coordinates: 60°9′N 43°53′W / 60.150°N 43.883°W / 60.150; -43.883
Native nameIkerasassuaq  (Greenlandic)
Ocean/sea sourcesLabrador Sea / Irminger Sea
(North Atlantic Ocean)
Basin countriesGreenland
Max. length100 km (62 mi)
Max. width2.7 km (1.7 mi)

The Prince Christian Sound (Greenlandic: Ikerasassuaq;[1] Danish:Prins Christians Sund) is a waterway in Southern Greenland. It separates the mainland from Sammisoq (Christian IV Island) and other islands of the Cape Farewell Archipelago near the southernmost tip of Greenland. The name was given in honour of the prince, later king Christian VIII of Denmark.[2]

Geography[edit]

The Prince Christian Sound connects the Labrador Sea with the Irminger Sea. It is around 100 km (60 miles) long and it is narrow, sometimes only 500 metres (1,600 ft) wide. There is only one settlement along this sound, Aappilattoq.

The long fjord system is mostly surrounded by steep mountains in general reaching over 1,200 metres (3,900 ft), one of them 2,220 metres (7,280 ft) high[3][4] Many glaciers go straight into its waters where they calve icebergs. There are often strong tidal currents limiting the formation of ice. It has many offshoots, such as Kangerluk to the north midway through the fjord, Ikeq Fjord in the south, and in the west Ilua Fjord, Ikerasaq Fjord (Akuliarutsip Imaa), Utoqqarmiut Fjord (Pamialluup Kujatinngua) and the Torsukattak Fjord.[5]

View of the shore.
Head of a glacier

Weather station[edit]

At the entrance to the East to the Strait (60°03′N 43°10′W / 60.050°N 43.167°W / 60.050; -43.167) there is a weather station founded by the US during World War II under the name Bluie East One. The task of the weather station was to ensure that the shipping industry had reliable data on the weather at Kap Farvel. On January 7, 1959, when the ship MS Hans Hedtoft hit an iceberg at Cape Farvel, the radio telegraphist at the weather station at Prince Christian Sound was the first to catch the ship's distress signal.

The weather station is today run by the International Civil Aviation Organization ICAO together with Tele Greenland. A long wooden stairway leads from the harbour up to the station with community building, power plant, residential barracks and radio aerial plants.

Tourism[edit]

The scenery of Prince Christian Sound attracts summer cruise ships to the area, with some vessels as large as the 86,700 ton Eurodam.[6] Ships must go slowly due to the icebergs.

Climate[edit]

Prince Christian Sound has a maritime polar climate (Köppen ET) making borderline with subpolar oceanic climate (Cfc) due low annual temperature swings for its latitude and relatively high temperature in center months. Summer temperatures are way below the tree line requirements, whereas the long winters are comparatively mild for its high latitude. The nearby ice sheet produces cold air which keeps summer temperatures down.[citation needed]

Climate data for Prince Christian Sound 1961-1990, extremes 1958-1999
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 7.5
(45.5)
9.0
(48.2)
9.0
(48.2)
11.6
(52.9)
14.0
(57.2)
20.0
(68.0)
24.2
(75.6)
20.9
(69.6)
20.0
(68.0)
14.2
(57.6)
9.8
(49.6)
13.4
(56.1)
24.2
(75.6)
Average high °C (°F) −1.9
(28.6)
−1.8
(28.8)
−1.3
(29.7)
1.5
(34.7)
4.4
(39.9)
7.3
(45.1)
9.8
(49.6)
9.6
(49.3)
6.9
(44.4)
3.5
(38.3)
0.6
(33.1)
−0.9
(30.4)
3.1
(37.7)
Average low °C (°F) −6.2
(20.8)
−6.3
(20.7)
−5.9
(21.4)
−3.5
(25.7)
−0.6
(30.9)
1.2
(34.2)
3.3
(37.9)
3.3
(37.9)
1.9
(35.4)
−0.7
(30.7)
−3.4
(25.9)
−5.1
(22.8)
−1.8
(28.7)
Record low °C (°F) −20.0
(−4.0)
−16.0
(3.2)
−16.9
(1.6)
−15.2
(4.6)
−10.2
(13.6)
−5.5
(22.1)
−3.6
(25.5)
−3.5
(25.7)
−3.2
(26.2)
−6.9
(19.6)
−12.0
(10.4)
−15.3
(4.5)
−20.0
(−4.0)
Average precipitation mm (inches) 262
(10.3)
246
(9.7)
205
(8.1)
227
(8.9)
175
(6.9)
136
(5.4)
129
(5.1)
173
(6.8)
233
(9.2)
219
(8.6)
227
(8.9)
251
(9.9)
2,483
(97.8)
Average precipitation days (≥ 1 mm) 15.9 15.6 14.1 14.2 12.5 10.0 10.5 10.4 12.7 12.7 13.0 15.1 156.7
Average snowy days 16.6 15.8 15.0 13.6 7.8 1.8 0.2 0.1 3.0 9.1 13.5 14.6 111.1
Source: DMI

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Den grønlandske Lods - Geodatastyrelsen
  2. ^ Prins Christian Sund (Den Store Danske Leksikon) (in Danish)
  3. ^ Wiles, Andrew (2016). Arctic and Northern Waters (Revised first ed.). St Ives: Imray Laurie Norie & Wilson LTD. p. 224. ISBN 978 184623 828 4.
  4. ^ See Open Street Map at 60°23′26″N 44°00′06″W / 60.3906°N 44.0016°W / 60.3906; -44.0016.
  5. ^ "Torsukattak". Mapcarta. Retrieved 8 April 2016.
  6. ^ Scenic Cruising on Eurodam

External links[edit]