Hunting is an essential part of Greenlandic culture. It was how the Inuit survived for thousands of years and many locals still hunt in their spare time to fill their freezers with locally-sourced meat. Although guests may be surprised to find rifles for sale in the supermarket and a person walking around town with a gun slung over their shoulder – this is life here in Greenland.
Aasivissuit – Nipisat. Inuit Hunting Ground between Ice and Sea
The importance of hunting is reflected in UNESCO designating an area that stretches from south of Sisimiut to 40km inside the Greenland Ice Sheet at Kangerlussuaq as a world heritage site: Aasivissuit – Nipisat. This cultural landscape includes 7 key locations that reflect how the Inuit sustained themselves by hunting marine and land animals.
With its enormous backcountry and easy access to musk ox and reindeer (caribou), several licenced outfitters within Destination Arctic Circle offer trophy hunting experiences. These take place in designated areas with outfitters that have extensive local knowledge of the landscape and animals. It is also possible to go hunting for Rock Ptarmigan, seals and arctic hare.
The Inuit were always very careful with their hunting – never taking more than they needed and utilising every part of the killed beast. The trophy hunting outfitters adhere to this ancient protocol by:
- Bringing back the meat of the animal to be sold for human consumption or used to feed the Greenlandic sled dogs
- Selling the reindeer (caribou) skin to locals, or re-working it into layers to protect against the cold in winter
- Selling the musk ox skins so the the inner wool – qiviut – can be harvested, sold, and made into yarn for knitting
In addition, the government sets a strict quota on the number of trophies that can be taken in any year. This is done in collaboration with the university, professional hunters, and locals, all leading to sustainable hunting in the area.
Trophy Hunting Operators
The following companies offer trophy hunting in the region: