Home Media Photo report: Hiking in Sarek National Park

Photo report: Hiking in Sarek National Park


NATURE. Four comrades from Sweden’s Nest 4 and Nest 6 spent five days hiking in the Sarek and Stora Sjöfallet national parks, in the Laponian area, northern Sweden, to experience the beauty and power of the North.

The party took their first steps into Laponia’s wilderness on the afternoon of 12 August. The first kilometres were marked by both difficult terrain and mosquitoes, but even so there was excitement in the air, and the weather was beautiful.

One of the journey’s first sights and a taste of what awaited.
Lined up and ready!

The first day’s hike was only short because it began so late, with camp being made at an elevated point just below the tree line in Stora Sjöfallet.

The view from the campsite early the following morning.
The view of the campsite and the shrouded mountain that watched over it.

The second day’s hike began with a strange omen in the form of a curious fox, who boldly strolled around the camp while the gear was being packed up. The fox accepted some dried meat and came very close to the comrades, as the photographs show.

Slyly it snuck around.
“I see you.”
Everyone was amazed by the visitor’s unabashed manner.
It didn’t even leave to lie down and rest.

The fox stayed behind when the group departed but sent them away with a happy memory – and it wasn’t the last the day would offer.

A chance to cool off and quench one’s thirst.
Byström displays a find.
A look back after passing the tree line.
One of the hundreds of crystal-clear watercourses along the route.
Saxlind scales a boulder and acts as lookout.
The view from the second evening’s campsite. Sarek can now be seen.

It was a tired group that laid down to rest in their tents here. They had passed up a suitable campsite a few kilometres back in order to cover a longer distance, but they had to go farther than expected before reaching a new one and finally getting food and respite. The following day they would enter Sarek.

The hikers on Day 3.
The way ahead.
Wildlife circled at a distance.
The milky rivers that distinguish those in Sarek National Park from Stora Sjöfallet’s.

Once inside Sarek, the group made camp immediately after a rather uneventful day. The greatest hardships awaited on the morrow.

Day 4 would comprise a long trip to the park’s highest point, so the backpacks used were light and small; however, the trip took all day and the weather prevented the party from reaching the summit.

A water break.
A march through magnificent surroundings.
Much less welcoming terrain.
A current that couldn’t be crossed without risk. A long detour was taken instead.
A waterfall seen from the top.
The day’s majestic destination.
A proud Martin Saxlind against a glorious background.
You only have as much fun as what you make for yourself.
The magnificence of these environments can never be done justice in photos, but this one comes close.

After a day’s hiking and some provisioning, a large storm started brewing and forced the party to break camp. A final photograph was taken of the storm front that was massing in the distance, before the group hastily packed up and hurried on.

Stormy weather and danger threaten.

The next day, after a few hours’ sleep, the comrades set off on a decisive march back to their cars without lunch or dinner breaks. The wind had abated and the sun was shining again, but energy levels were running low. As such there was great relief when the destination first came into sight.

A look back at the storm that still raged in Sarek.
The terrain begins to feel familiar.
When the comrades had almost returned, they were met by a beautiful rainbow.

It was an extremely challenging journey full of hardships, but it created memories of a lifetime for everyone involved. The beauty was made so much more profound and awe-inspiring by the power it inhabited. Vast expanses bordered by mountaintops and glaciers, the sheer scope that makes man insignificant in comparison, and the contrasts that defy any description for those who haven’t experienced them first-hand.


More photos can be viewed in Martin Saxlind’s personal account of the trip here [Swedish].