Troms Area Mountains Guide

Towards Istind - Troms Area Mountains Guide

Introduction

Troms is the second northernmost county in Norway, and certainly very different from the northernmost, Finnmark. Whereas Finnmark is characterized by wide valleys and a great mountain plateau, Troms has high sharp peaks and long narrow fjords and valleys. The difference is evident just as you cross the county-border from Finnmark and see the peaks of the Kvænangen mountains in the horizon. Troms has a lot to offer mountaineers, but should also be visited by normal tourists. The difference from the boring forests of Sweden is great, anyone heading for North Cape will certainly get the most out of this route.

Terrain

As mentioned, Troms is rugged. All the way from the Swedish border to the coast you will find high mountains. The inner part has wider valleys and the mountains are not that peaky, but their altitude is greater. Further out, you will find that the terrain gets more rugged between the fjords. Especially the peninsula of Lyngshalvøya has very high sharp peaks. But also the outer islands of Senja, Ringvassøy and Kvaløy has quite a number of peaks. Right in between all of this the city of Tromsø is situated.

Troms is a unique mountain land. The alpine peaks has a lot of possibilties for climbers as well as winter-powder for the skiers. In summer, the midnight-sun shines all night, making long climbs and hiking-trips possible. In winter, the northern lights fly over the dark skies, making the visit a memory for life time. Troms is a dreamland for the mountaineer. Have a nice trip!

Legal status

The only national-park in Troms of particular size is Øvre Dividalen, a wide valley close to the border to Sweden. Lyngsalpene - the great area of peaks on the Lyngen peninsula is also proposed as a national park. It is expected that this proposition will go thorough without problems because of the very alpine degree of the nature there. In addition there is a small national-park, Ånderdalen, on the island of Senja. Ånderdalen is a small forested valley in the middle of the island, in contrast to the very mountainous nature by the shoreline.

An issue that should not be overseen is the presence of the Norwegian Army in Troms. Due to Russia being the only potential enemy of Norway, Troms with all its mountains has been pointed out to be the area to stop an invation. As a result, many of the valleys in central Troms are dominted by the Army and their activities, including air-raids and shell-firing. Although having a standing army is a necessity, many see the Defence - related activities in Troms as harmful to the nature, and the total environment.
Map over Troms

Troms Mountain Routes

Getting there

Tromsø is the main airport in Northern Norway and thus have good connections with Oslo, Trondheim and Bergen. There are also a number of smaller airports served from Tromsø or Bodø. Anyway, you will usually be better off using bus from Tromsø or Narvik if you're going to the inland and boat or coastal steamer from Tromsø if you're going to the coast. The mountain areas by the Swedish border is hard to reach by public transport.

Troms has good roads and good conditions for the driver. Remember that all of the roads will be snow-covered winter time. Many tourists just go up the E6 on their way to North Cape. Try a tour off in Troms, for instance along the Lyngen peninsula. You will not regret it!

Routes

The outer areas of Troms are mostly inhabited along the coast and in major valleys. This area has great opportunities for daytrips, for instance to summits, but not so great for longer trips. On the other hand, the inner parts of Troms are great for longer trips. A long line of lodges have been put up to make the trip all the way through inner Troms not far from the border possible.

Hiking and Skiing

Longer hiking- and skiing trips is best in the inner parts of Troms. Many choose to start at Kilpisjärvi by the Finnish border and pass the Three Country Point (Treriksrøysa) between Norway, Sweden and Finland on the way south along the route between the other huts. You can cross the borders as you like as long as you don't bring living animals. Hiking trips here is possible all summer, but needless to say: it's best to hold the skiing until the light is back in February.

For day trips, there are thousands of stunning trips to be done in outer Troms. Anyone should find something that suits them here. From steep mountains that almost require climbing to paths through silent woods. Skiers should be aware of the very present danger for avalanches. The coast-near areas of Troms with high mountains can get very large amounts of snow in winter, making some of the valleys very risky. Use your experience, and check out with locals before you go! This being said, some of the most ultimate skiing experiences can be found in Lyngsalpene, and the other mountain-areas of outer Troms. It might be best to wait until May, when the snow is heavier and the avalanche risk is low. This season also gives infinite daylight, and great possibility for long ski trips in Lyngsalpene. An example is the famous ski trip over Jiekkevarre, Troms' highest mountain. This trip is long, it takes one full day from early morning, to late night, and is only for the experienced. But it is probably one of the greatest ski trips possible in Norway!

Climbing

Also for climbers, Troms give plenty of opportunities. There are many summits that only can be reached with climbing, most of them are in Lyngsalpene. Due to loose rock, many find this area better for climbing in winter than in summer, but needless to say: The conditions are tough in winter this far north.

Anyway, the less summit-interested climbers will probably appreciate Kvaløya more as a climbing area. On Kvaløya you will find a lot of high walls ending on summits normally reachable on foot. And the risk of being caught in a queue of climbers is non-existent!

Glacier-Tours

There are glaciers in Lyngsalpene, and on Øksfjordjøkulen on the border between Troms and Finnmark. There are no guiding, but it's a fantastic terrain if you go on your own. The best place for a glacier-tour is possibly Lyngsdalen, where the glaciers of Vestbreen and Sørbreen surrounded by high peaks are nice for tours. On Øksfjordjøkulen you can find the only icefall on mainland Norway that falls directly down to the fjord. The name is Jøkelfjordbreen, but unfortunately it's to steep for tours. (That is - unless you are a crazy ice-climber!)

Troms Mountain area



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