Southeastern Greenland from 32,000 Feet

November 24, 2014


Photographer: Scott Hammonds; Scott's Web site
Summary Authors: Scott Hammonds; Jim Foster

The photo above showing a portion of the ice sheet in southeastern Greenland was taken at an altitude of 32,000 ft (9,754 m) from the cockpit of the Boeing 767 I was piloting. It was snapped at approximately 9:00 a.m. local Greenland time (1100 GMT) on October 21, 2014. I fly across the Atlantic from North America to Europe several times a month and this is probably the best view of Greenland I've enjoyed in years!

Fresh snow is seen clinging to the flanks of mountain peaks poking through the ice cap (nunataks). The low angle of the Sun, which is only above the horizon for around 6-7 hours here in late October, makes the scene more dynamic and gives a sense of the topographic relief. Note the bluish tinge to the shadows; caused by blue light from the clear sky entering the shadowed areas. Brighter patches of ice, on the right-hand side of the image, are crevasses that result from the stress and variations in velocity of the moving ice.

Photo details: Camera Model: Canon EOS 6D; Lens: EF24-105mm f/4L IS USM; Focal Length: 105mm; Aperture: f/10.0; Exposure Time: 0.0016 s (1/640); ISO equiv: 200; Software: Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 5.4 (Macintosh).