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Scandinavian Hiking Extravaganza

August 10, 2013

Having quit my job in early summer and not having the heart to jump into a search right away, I decided to spend a month in Scandinavia hiking. I got the idea from a book called Classic Hikes of the World by Peter Potterfield, which had a great description of the Kungsleden (the KING of Trails) in Northern Sweden and decided to do bit more hiking while I was at it.

This is what I did:
Flew into Stockholm (leaving my non-hiking bag at my hotel)
Flew from Stockholm to Kiruna (northern Sweden, the gateway to the Kungsleden)
Took the train from Kiruna to Abisko and hiked the Kungsleden to Nikkaluotka (approximately 105km) also summiting Kebnekaise, Sweden’s highest mountain.
Flew back to Stockholm, picked up my bag, and took the train to Oslo.
Joined a week long guided DNT tour of Jotunheimen National Park (included the Besseggen Ridge and a failed attempted at summiting Glittertind (bad weather)).
Took a self guided fjord tour including hiking to Preikstolen.

While it was a great vacation, in retrospect I wish I had done a little less jumping around, and I wish I had spent more time in the north (as the south was super crowded).

What I wish I had done
Flown from Stockholm to Kiruna and hiked the Kungsleden (as I did).
Taken the train to Narvik (Norway), the bus to Bodo, and maybe visited the Lofoten Islands.
Taken the overnight train to Trondheim, and either done some hiking in that area (Trollheimen is supposed to be lovely), or found my way to Jotunheimen from Trondheim.
Then spent a couple days relaxing in Oslo and Stockholm before returning home.

The problem with that itinerary would be finding places to store non-hiking gear while in the parks, but I’m sure it’s doable. Also, if I had the money I would have loved to visit Svalbard.

Full write up of the Kungsleden
Full write up of Jotunheimen
Full write up of Preikstolen

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