Our adventures

Ski Expedition in Northern Norway

The very north of Norway is wild and exotic. On this ski adventure tour in Norway, you can join us on an expedition across the Finnmarksvidda. Few, if any places in the world, are better for experiencing the Northern Lights!

This trip went beyond all of my expectations! It is not a thing that I would have changed, except that I would have wanted it to last much longer. The mountain lodges was cosy, and the food could have been served to royals. Our guides will without any doubt be given the highest score possible. Simply put, this is a trip i highly recommend!— Guest in February 2016

Many people have a dream of doing a polar skiing expedition, and the classic crossing of the county Finnmark is a good start! Forbes travel magazine named the crossing of Finnmarksvidda one of the five most beautiful skiing Adventure Tours in the world. The 80 beautiful kilometres in Finnmarksvidda is in the same area where the native Sami people have herded reindeer for generations. Herding reindeer are still a common occupation among the Sami, and we might see some of their animals during the skiing days. What we are guaranteed to see, is the hallmark of Northern Norway: the extraordinary light. During the day we ski in low daylight, and the sky shifts in a rainbow of dusky colors as the sun gradually settles. 

  • Start in the small town of Alta, in Western Finnmark.
  • Ski 80 km total over the trip with daily legs of 25-35 km each day.
  • Stay in authentic, simple mountain lodges each night to warm up and relax after a long ski day.
  • Relish the taste of local ingredients to enjoy delicious meals made for you after a long day.
  • Star gaze and watch for the Northern Lights each night in the dark, quiet solitude of nature.

 In clear weather, there are few, if any, places in the world that are better for seeing the Northern Lights. Surrounded by total darkness, our little group can enjoy this spectacular scenery exclusively for themselves. The tour does not require participants to be super fit, but you should be in relatively good shape to keep the pace steady and enjoy the experience. The terrain is gentle and flat, but you should be a relatively experienced skier to ensure you get the most out of the tour. You will be taught procedures, and given information and tips about how to best plan and carry out a winter expedition on skis.

The tour starts and ends in Alta, and Alta has several daily flights (SAS and Norwegian) to Oslo and Tromsø.

You can book the Adventure Tour in the menu to the right; please let us know if you have any questions. You can contact us at [email protected] 

WHAT TO BRING?

Have a look at the full equipment list by clicking "Equipment list" in the menu above. You can leave some luggage at the airport in Alta. 

ACCOMMODATION

Accommodation before and after the start of the trip is not included. However, we highly recommend spending more days within the area of Finnmark. Most of the people participating in our skiing trips like to spend one night at the spectacular Igloo/Ice hotel and end their journey in the Sami village of Karasjok. Our staff and guides have worked within the area for years and will provide you with first-hand knowledge regarding popular activities such as dogsledding, northern lights and ice-fishing. 

INSURANCE 

You need a travel and health insurance, that also includes transportation back to your country. Remember to bring your insurance card/information. 

LANGUAGE         

The guide speaks English.

CHANGES MAY OCCUR

We reserve the right to make changes to the program, and the price. The day to day program is indicative, and changes may occur. Please have a look at our terms and conditions

WHAT'S INCLUDED?          

  • Professional nature guide
  • Breakfast, packed lunch, and dinner (as described in the day to day program). 
  • All local transport

NOT INCLUDED IN THE PRICE:

  • Transportation to the meeting point in Alta
  • Drinks and snacks.
  • Accommodation before and after the trip

Day 1: To the historical stilla

First, we will pick up the people coming on the morning flight from Oslo. Transport up to Stilla, the starting point for the trip. We then ski 10 km to Joatkajavri mountain lodge. Maybe we'll already see reindeer on our way there. Joatkajavri is one of the three remaining mountain lodges in Finnmark that the Norwegian state own. The lodges were established in 1840 because people such as the priest, district sheriff, doctor and municipal treasurer needed places to stay when they had business to attend to on the mountain plateau. The distance between the lodges was then set to around 30 km, bearing in mind the time it took to walk between them or drive in a horse and cart. Unlike many of the buildings in Finnmark, Joatkajavri was not burned down during World War II, and the oldest buildings date from 1878.

Accommodation Mountain lodge Ascent 40m Distance 10km Meals D Descent 20m Time 3hrs skiing  Transport 1 hr

Day 2: Across Finnmark's largest lake

The day's leg takes us from Joatkajavri to Mollisjok, including across Finnmark's largest lake Iesjavri. We leave the cosy mountain lodge in Jotka and look forward to the longest distance on this trip. Maybe we'll meet a herd of reindeer en route? During the day we will ski in mostly flat terrain. However, the few high meters at the start of the day will bring us up to the recognisable, and majestic Arctic landscape. You will now have the opportunity to rest your eyes on a landscape that are as big as it is beautiful. If the sky is clear, it is possible to see small mountains on the horizon. On the inner-most part of the Finnmark plateau, you will find the mountain lodge Øvre Mollisjok. The house has functioned as both accommodations and work for generations. Our hostess for the evening is Margit. She was the youngest of 16 siblings who grew up at Mollisjok, more than 60 kilometres away from the nearest grocery store. 

If we are lucky, there are few if any places in the world that are better to see the northern lights than Mollisjok.

Accommodation Mountain lodge Ascent 200m Distance 30km Meals BLD Descent 150m Time 8-10 hrs skiing 

Day 3: Orroaigiellasat

Orroaigiellasat, or the range of the dog as it would be if you translated the Sami word for today's area. It is a myth sprained place. The 24 kilometres we will ski today are known for windy areas and an immensely beautiful landscape. It stretches out in all directions, and in clear weather, we can spot Finland on the horizon. With your hood over your head, you will get the real expedition feeling. After 24 kilometres we will reach today's destination, the mountain lodge Ravnastua. Surrounded by sparsely growing forest, you find the mountain lodge Ravnastua located within the wilderness. Here we will be served a traditional dinner. Remember to write your name in the guestbook! 

Accommodation Mountain lodge Ascent 150m Distance 30km Meals BLD Descent 250m Time 8-9 hrs skiing 

Day 4: At the end of the Finnmark plateau

The trips are not over before we have reached the very end of Finnmarksvidda. From Ravnastua, skiing down to Assebakti is relatively short. Some parts of the trail may be challenging, but the day is short and does not have to hurry. Look forward to a feeling of mastery and happiness when we take us down the last 14 kilometres. 

Our taxi will pick us up at the end of Finnmarksvidda, and from there we drive 2-3 hours back to Alta. 

Ascent 50m Distance 16km Meals BL Descent 400m Time 4-5 hrs skiing  Transport 2,5 hrs

Take a good look at this list, and make sure you bring everything you need. We encourage you to use what you have for this trip, and purchase items if youre missing something important on the list below. We have divided the gear list into three categories:

1) Required: If you do not own this gear, you must acquire it for your trip. 

2) Recommended: Gear we suggest to be comfortable, but it is not imperative.

3) Optional: Fun, additional luxuries.  

Layering is extremely important in a variable climate like Norway. This list will guide you through the essentials. Remember the Norwegian saying "There is no bad weather, only bad gear", and prepare appropriately for any weather. You can read about weather where youre traveling here.

The video below is for SUMMER gear, you can use it as a baseline in order to pack for your winter trip. The weather in Norway at this time can vary from a dry, cold winter to a more harsh climate depending on the year. Make sure you pack effective gear and try and keep weight relatively low. Welcome to Norway!

Please contact us at [email protected] if you have any questions.

We always recommend wool in the Norwegian Mountains, but if you already have synthetic layers and don't want to buy new ones, synthetic is okay. 

 

REQUIRED:

SKIS, BOOTS, POLES

Durable skis, leather clip in boots, and backcountry ski poles. 

SKI WAX

Blue and green rating

BASE LAYER - 2 SETS

2 sets of wool long-sleeved top and bottom. Warm, Extra Warm or Expedition thickness is recommended. 

MID-LAYER A medium thickness wool or fleece top to go over your base layer. 

INSULATED JACKET

A thick, warm, insulated jacket to put on during breaks. We recommend a puffy jacket with down or synthetic. 

SHELL / RAIN JACKET

Gore-Tex or similar is mandatory. Extrememly important in Norwegian climate. The jacket must be waterproof, have a hood, and make sure you don’t get wet even if it rains all day. We recommend jackets with pit zips for ventilation. 

MEDIUM INSULATED JACKET

Use a synthetic or down jacket that fits over your base layer and mid layer, yet underneathe your rain shell. Should be comfortable with full range of movement when all layers are on.

EXTRA TOP LAYER

Bring an extra medium thick layer to add underneathe your medium insulated jacket in case you get cold easily. 

GLOVES & MITTENS

1 thin pair of wool gloves to protect your hands. 1 pair of over mittens for additional warmth with windproofing. 1 extra pair of thick mittens in case yours get wet. 3 in total. 

HATS

2 warm hats. 1 thick, 1 thin. Make sure at least one has a windproof lining. 

HIKING SOCKS

4 pairs, we recommend wool, above the ankle or higher. 2 thin. 2 thick. We recommend a 5th pair that are extra thick for evenings. 

BOOTS

Bring lightweight boots for when we are not skiing.

BACKPACK

Backpack, 30-40 liter capacity. 

SUNGLASSES 1 & 2

UV rated, we recommend a strap to keep them in place and so they don't get lost. Bring dark lenses with plastic frames, not metal. Bring a second pair of Alpine Glasses, these cover more of your face in case of strong winds.

SUNSCREEN / CHAPSTICK

Make sure the Chapstick has UV rated sunscreen in it. 

WATER BOTTLES

Insulated water bottle, 2 liter capacity. Do not bring a camelback bladder, this will freeze in cold temperatures. 

TOILETRIES

Personal basics: shampoo, conditioner, toothbrush, toothpaste, hairbrush, etc...

PERSONAL MEDICATIONS

Make sure you bring any personal meds you need on your trip, and ensure the Hvitserk office is updated on your allergies or needs. 

SHELL PANTS

Waterproof shell pants. Gortex is best. We recommend heavier duty pants to keep you warm with zips for ventilation. 

HEADLAMP

Make sure you bring extra batteries as they die faster in the cold. 

 

RECOMMENDED:

WOOL UNDERWEAR

We highly recommend bringing wool underwear and bra. No cotton.

COMPRESSION SACKS FOR GEAR Recommended for storing your gear, keeping it dry, and compressing your down jackets to create more space. 
BALACLAVA AND BUFF

A wool layer to protect your neck and face. 

THERMOS

We recommend a thermos for hot drinks to have with you all day. We suggest a large, 1 liter thermos.

FIRST AID KIT

If you have certain hiking aids specific to you: i.e. blister care or ibuprofen, etc...

CAMERA

Be prepared for the cold. Insulating your camera will keep it working for the entire trip. We suggest bringing an extra battery pack. 

CASUAL CLOTHES

Cozy clothes to wear when we are not participating in activities. 

SITTING MAT

Strongly recommended to insulate you from the ground.

SWIMMING SUIT OR SHORTS AND BRA

For sitting ine saunas. 

 

OPTIONAL:

ANTIBAC

If you need it for the bathroom or lunch. 

WET WIPE OR TOILET PAPER

If you have a bathroom emergency while hiking. We use "pack it in pack it out" ethics, so you will need to carry out your used items and throw them away later.

EAR PLUGS

If youre a light sleeper.

JOURNAL AND PEN

 In order to take notes and write about the trip.

SNACKS

Chocolate, nuts or energy bars if there is something particular you enjoy eating. You will have the opportunity to buy snacks on your trip.

HEADSET

If you would like to listen to music or an audio book while skiing.

Bed linens and towels are included all nights.