Ski touring in Lofoten

The Lofoten Islands offers some of the most beautiful summits in the country. The contrast between pointed peaks, solid views and the sea below is unique and created for epic skiing experiences.

Location with short distances to numerous summits up to 1000 meters above sea level, makes Lofoten the ultimate destination for ski touring. There is no other place than the Lofoten Islands that will offer a panoramic view of the sea and mountains as far as you can see in every direction.

Imagine the experience of looking straight down into the sea before you whiz down the Lofoten mountains on wonderful powder snow. It can only be described by those who have been here.

The ski touring season in Lofoten begins in February

History indicates that the season of ski touring in Lofoten begins in February. By then, the snow has settled and it isreal winter. At the beginning of the season, you can experience a wonderful light. Magical sunrises and sunsets, and during the darker hours, if you’re lucky, you can see the northern lights dancing in the sky. Throughout spring, the days get brighter and longer. In recent years, the season has extended until the beginning of June.

Focus on safety.

An important part of any excursion is the focus on safety. Therefore, conscious planning and implementation of trips are incredibly important. Both the weather forecast and the avalanche forecast must be followed closely. The coastal climate in Lofoten can provide varying weather and if you are going up in the mountains you must be prepared for varied weather that changes quickly.

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Although the mountains in Lofoten are steep, there are countless choices that offer different terrain and levels of difficulty. There’s a summit for everyone. The Lofoten Islands also has a great choice of routes where you can experience several summits in a day. Many of the tours are entirely possible to do on your own, but we always recommend hiring an experienced local guide as this provides increased safety and greater joy of hiking. Here are some of our favorites in no particular order:

Torskmannen (755 m)

  • Starting point/parking: Kvitfossen power station in Vestpollen
  • Duration: 3-4 hours

A relatively easy trip that mostly offers good skiing conditions. When you have parked at the power station, aim towards the top in a northwesterly direction and go inland before following the ridge up through the forest boundary. It is important to note that the top of the back is avalanche prone. There are several different descent options, suitable for everything from beginners to advanced. This trip can be nicely combined with Breitinden.

Småtindan / Varden (662 m)

  • Starting point/parking: Solbakken outside Kabelvåg
  • Duration: 3-4 hours. Several alternative slopes.

This is an easily accessible and very popular tour. From the car park, follow the ski trail to the Ski Cabin. Follow the ridge called Aksla up towards Ørntinden. Keep to the right around the top of Aksla. From there it is a few meters down before continuing the ascent towards Varden. It is common to stick to the left all the way to Varden. NB: The top slope is 30-35 degrees in some places and is avalanche prone.

Rundtinden / Rundfjellet (803 m)

  • Starting point/parking: Vatterfjorden or Vestpolleidet
  • Duration: 4-5 hours

There are alternative routes both up and down. It’s a beautiful mountain with varieties for skiing. Below we’ll describe the route with Vatterfjorden as the starting point. Follow the north side of the water and aim at the southern part of the mountain. Follow this ridge to the north until it turns west. Please stick to the top of the ridge as the area is prone to avalanches. From here, choose the safest way towards the top.

Pilan (828 m)

  • Starting point/parking: Just before Laupstad
  • Duration: 3-4 hours

Pass the houses and follow the valley to the lake. Stick to the right towards Morfjordskaret and take left to the wide flank up towards Pilan The northern peak is your goal. If you take right by Morfjordskaret, you will reach Sautinden. These summits are nice to combine.

Kvittinden (696 m)

  • Starting point/parking: Just before Laupstad
  • Duration: 3-3,5 hours

Cross the road and walk through the small forest and up a number of thresholds. When you reach the flatter area, turn slightly right, and follow the main valley. Follow the last steep climb to the top. The safest way is to keep the track slightly to the left of the flat area just before the top. Be aware, one section in the top slope is 40 degrees.

Geitgaljartinden (1085 m) - NB.

  • Starting point/parking: The shop on Liland, near Laupstad
  • Duration: 6 hours
  • NB! Only for experienced skiers. Not recommended without a guide.

This is considered Lofoten’s roughest summit experience. The trip takes place in a very exciting alpine terrain, and the summit offers unique views of Lofoten. The route follows the right side of the river until it becomes significantly steeper and then continues further up. It is an avalanche-prone area. By the mountain wall, a little over halfway, follow the ramp upwards to the right before breaking around and continue upward. Just before the last part, there is a bowl formation that forms the top of the southern gully. The area is very prone to avalanches with large outbreaks several times a year. The last part up to the saddle before the top it may be necessary to attach the skis to your backpack. An ice ax and crampons are recommended and sometimes necessary. It is very common to leave the skis on the saddle, before embarking on the final bit.

Ski touring weekend?

A long weekend in the Lofoten Islands including a lot of fun, ski touring in a safe environment, and plenty of delicious food on the menu. We are offering a package with 3 days of guided ski touring and accommodation in rorbu cabin 4 nights on a full board basis.

See our package here