Day 7 : Narsaq — Nanortalik  (By Boat)

On our way to Nanortalik we refueled at Qaqortoq ( Julianehĺb ) (No picture!)

Panorama towards Nalunaq and the church steeple
Panorama towards Nalunaq and the church steeple
Church Steeple
Church Steeple

Zooming in on the steep mountain called the "Church Steeple" (Kirkespiret or Napassorssuaq 1287 m - Point 1 on the green map  further below). An enlargement from middle of above picture.

View towards the north from hotel room in Hotel Kap Farvel where we stayed for two nights in Nanortalik.

Nanortalik means 'place of bears', i. e. polar bears, but we didn't meet any, not this time of the year. Each winter however several polar bears are spotted in the area
Around Nanortalik the geological map is coloured in as "pelitic to semipelitic gneiss, often with considerable pegmatite migmatisation, generally with cordierite and sillimanite".

Hotel Kap Farvel
Hotel Kap Farvel
Gneiss in road cutting near Hotel kap farvel.
Gneiss in road cutting near Hotel kap farvel.
Gneiss near the church.Diameter of lens cap = 52 mm.
Gneiss near the church.Diameter of lens cap = 52 mm.
Gneiss in Nanortalik.Diameter of coin = 28 mm.
Gneiss in Nanortalik.Diameter of coin = 28 mm.

The wooden church is from 1916 and reminds about a Danish village church.
The wooden church is from 1916 and reminds about a Danish village church.

Day 8 :Pictorial Trip Report

Visit to the Nalunaq Gold Mine

Visit to the Nalunaq Gold Mine
Visit to the Nalunaq Gold Mine

1. The Church Steeple
2. Nalunaq Gold Mine
3. Graphite Mine
4. "The Saw Teeth" mountain (Savtakkerne) - on the island of Sermersôq.
5. Nanortalik
6. Tasermiut Fjord (a mountaineering el dorado)
7. From here photos were taken of The Church Steeple and The Saw Teeth
8. Sarqâ Fjord

Nalunaq Gold Mine campsite.
Nalunaq Gold Mine campsite.

From Nanortalik (point 5) we sailed to the landing place for the Nalunaq Gold Mine (point 2). Two cars from the mining company picked us up and drove us the five miles up to the campsite, on the valley floor approximately 230 meters above sea level. Although Nalunaq means something like ” a place that is difficult to find” or 'go out and look for rocks' we were guided to it without any difficulties.


Molasse basin
Molasse basin

The red line (right picture) shows the dip of the molasse-type sandstone (later metamorphosed into "meta-arkose) deposited in a marginal basin in the Ketilidian orogeny and overlying the gold mine host rocks (a thrust sheet).

At 350 meters above sea level.
At 350 meters above sea level.
Entrance to the gold mine.
Entrance to the gold mine.

The host rock is amphibolite (dark metamorphic rock, and as the names says, containing amphiboles).

Gold vein inside the mine. (Photo by Roger Baker)
Gold vein inside the mine. (Photo by Roger Baker)
Searching for visible gold in the stockpile.
Searching for visible gold in the stockpile.
Gold on quarts. Width of picture ca. 5 cm.
Gold on quarts. Width of picture ca. 5 cm.

On the island Amitsoq there is an abandoned graphite mine. Graphite was mined here in the period 1915-25, and remains of the equipment used for the extraction can still be seen. Graphite schists in folded migmatite zone.

Graphite Mine.
Graphite Mine.
And it was another fine day.
And it was another fine day.

Day 10 : Narssârssuk – pegmatite outcrops

A boat from Blue Ice took us to the starting point for our hike.

Icebergs forming
Icebergs forming
Walk
Walk

Narssârssuk is a smaller (syenite) pegmatite in the western part of the Igferfigssalik centre, related to a porphyritic microsyenite intrusion. A few hundred meters away is the Nanna Pegmatite (Narsaarsuup Qaava).

Icebergs forming a semicircle around a moraine under water (to the south of Narsarsuaq). Photo taken on our way up to stop 1.

In the morning we went ashore where the arrow is and walked up to stop 1 and 2 (pegmatites) and back in the afternoon. Stop 1 and 2 are both about 300 m above sea level. They are at the foot of the highest summit in the area, namely the mountain Illerfissalik (Burfjeld in Danish)(outside the map area - to the right/east of the 2 stops)

Looking towards the west along the Eriksfjord. Narsaq is somewhere behind the Nunasarnaq. (with Nunasarnaq Formation 350 m). To the right (above Eriksfjord) The Eriksfjord Formation with the Ilimmaasaq above ca.in the middle.

Eriksfjord
Eriksfjord
Qooqqut.
Qooqqut.
Igaliko Fjord
Igaliko Fjord

Igaliko Fjord and Igaliko Settlement seen from stop 2. Igaliko is a settlement in the ancient see of Gardar. The ‘Gardar’ igneous province derives its name from the Diocese of Gardar.

The Igaliko nepheline syenite complex (Gardar province intrusions) covers an area of about 45 km2 between the fjords of Igaliko and Tunnulliarfiq (Eriksfjord) to the west and the inland ice in the east.

The syenite complex has four clearly separated intrusion centres and is one of the largest of its sort in the world. The mineral composition is generally simple with alkali feldspar and alkali nepheline as the main minerals, but in places the mineral composition has been changed through assimilation of host rocks.

The relatively small outcrops of the Narssârssuk and Nana pegmatites (stop 1 and 2) lie in the middle of the youngest syenite group.

Leifite. Coin diameter = 23 mm.
Leifite. Coin diameter = 23 mm.
Nafertisite. Coin diameter = 28 mm.
Nafertisite. Coin diameter = 28 mm.

Narssârssuk is the type locality for this mineral that was described in 1915 and named after Leif the Lucky, son of Eric the Red, the discoverer of Greenland.

Nafertisite.
Nafertisite.
Heading back. (Photo by Roger baker)
Heading back. (Photo by Roger baker)

The Nanna Pegmatite is indeed yielding the world's best nafertisite.

On the way out.
On the way out.

Day 11 : Narssarssuaq

Departure

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