New runway opened at Nuuk Airport, Greenland

Today’s crew on the GL502 from Nuuk to Ilulissat via Kangerlussuaq consisted of Captain Mikael Jakobsen, First Officer Peter Sarkov and Cabin Attendant Sara Hansen and they were excited about today’s flight. Luckily the weather was stable with a clear frost and therefore a beautiful morning. After all procedures were completed and the passengers were greeted, “Suloraq” drove to the new runway. A new sensation that will soon become routine for the pilots, so the moment had to be immortalized with a picture of the runway before they got ready to take off.

At 08:08 the runway was officially commissioned as the plane took off from Nuuk and over the “edge” towards Borgemster Anniitap Aqqutaa Strait.

The pilots had to go through the routine after takeoff before they could take the time to put into words what they experienced. There was great agreement in the cockpit that no one would have thought that this take-off would cause stomach cramps and goosebumps when the plane was just a few meters from the runway. It was something special and something I could pass on to family and friends.

The passengers, on the other hand, couldn’t really see or feel the difference, but it gave a slightly different view of the future airport building. One expressed that he could feel that the runway was perfectly flat. After about 45 minutes of a beautiful flight, GL502 landed in cold and clear Kangerlussuaq. The passengers were the first of many to pass through the airport today.

First takeoff from Nuuk Airport’s new runway: Air Greenland Dash 8-200 on flight GL502


A little later, GL540 from Nuuk lands with passengers traveling on to other destinations. After a short stopover, flight number GL541 will take you back to Nuuk.

The crew of this flight consists of Captain Edd Arne Lund, First Officer Benjamin Krarup Hammeken and Cabin Attendant Lisbeth Vængtoft Noahsen. They will be the first to have the honor of landing at the new Nuuk airstrip, causing some excitement but also some sadness. The experienced captain, who has landed in Nuuk thousands of times, explains that learning a new runway becomes routine over time, while the first officer who took off and landed on the old runway becomes a little more wistful above is thought of the now old runway. About 25 minutes before landing, pilots will review procedures to ensure they are calibrated.

The plan was to land from Sermitsiaq field but a car on the runway ahead of the approach prompts the pilots to take a nice approach past the capital to land on the south side of the runway towards Mayor Anniitap Aqqutaa.

Pilots during the first take-offs and landings on the new runway 04/22, which by the way is only 930 meters long, were satisfied with the runway. A new chapter in the country’s aviation history has begun and when the construction of the runway at 2200 meters is completed in 2024, the opening of the international airport will be marked with the landing of larger aircraft and who knows if it will be Air Greenland in the future Atlantic -Plane “Tuukkaq” which will have the honor of landing on that day.

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