Journeys worth taking

Finnmark, Norway

Finnmark Plateau West - East Expedition

Epic journeys

Finnmark, Norway

Lodging

Eco-Lodge / Tent / Cabin

Nights

8

Trip Details

Tour / privately guided

Price

2,050

Transport

Skis

Pygmy miles

2700

Experience
Experience
Itinerary
Pygmy miles
Accommodation
Practical info

Experience

Journey

In Finnmark, high above the Arctic Circle, silence envelops you. The landscape is dotted with the occasional tree and mountains in the distance, but otherwise, its fairly barren. It’s minimalism by natural design. You become transfixed as your breath fogs the unmoving landscape in front of you.

A husky barks, and stirs you back to reality.

You must continue your journey across the Finnmark Plateau. In total, you ski 80 km across the arctic landscape. At night you sleep in tents that you pitch yourself and if the conditions are right, the northern lights swirl above you. During the day, you ski across open plateaus, over hills and around mountains.  

Along the way, ice fishing spots will present themselves. Try to catch dinner.

With you are the trusty sled dogs that help pull some of the equipment. They love to work and you might even make a companion along the way.

high above the Arctic Circle, silence envelops you.

Activities

Trekking

Traverse the Finnmark Plateau by ski and experience true wilderness with local guides leading the way.

And also

  •  Test your ice­-fishing skills… your dinner may depend on it (not really).
  •  Learn about how the dogs work as a team and how they are trained.
  •  If you’re lucky, see the northern lights dance in the sky above you.
  •  Experience the silence and beauty of the arctic landscape.

Place

Finnmark is home to the indigenous Sami People. Your tour begins at a unique Eco Lodge in Karasjock, which is also the capital city of the Sami.

In the winter, temperatures near Karasjock test the depths of human adaptability. The lowest recorded temperatures was 61 degrees below zero Fahrenheit.

Isolated and desolate but somehow intriguing; the Finnmark Plateau is truly at the borders of humanity.

Luckily, during the spring and summer months, temperatures are much milder.

Weather conditions in March/April:

- Average temperature approx. -6 C (21,2F)

- Temperatures can drop down to approx. -25 C.

- Sunrise around 6am on 15th March and 4:30am on 15th April.

- Sunset around 5:30 on 15th March and 9:30pm on 15th April.

- The best time to see the northern light is before 5th April

Itinerary

Track

Itinerary

From late March to early May is probably the best time to see the Finnmark Plateau. The dark polar night is over and the light returns with higher temperatures and longer days. The skiing conditions are normally excellent, making it easy to get to almost anywhere you want to go. The weather is often good and the ice fishing gets better every day.

We leave the hustle and bustle of the civilization behind and we focus on making this a stress free outdoor experience. Every day presents new sceneries as we ski across wide open plateaus over hills and around mountains. We take the time to enjoying the environment and to make our tent camps as comfortable as possible. On our way we will also try ice fishing. Your very experienced guide will make sure safety is taken care of at all times.

The terrain is open, flat and easy to ski. The weather is normally good with cold nights and "mild" sunny days. The arctic weather however, can sometimes present some challenges. But do not worry! Your guides are highly professional and have years of experience from this environment, he/she will make sure you are well taken care of in any situation. On this trip we focus on comfort, good food and, as with all Turgleder trips, safety. Our daily skiing distance is between 4 and 22 kilometers. Total distance is approx. 80 km.

Day-1

Arrival in Alta.

Your guide will meet you at Alta Airport at 6pm or in Alta at 6:15pm and take you to a local guesthouse/cabin where you will stay the first night. You will be served dinner and your guide will go through the program for the trip and the exact skiing route with you. Your guide will also go through your personal outdoor equipment to make sure everybody have brought everything they need for the trip and that the equipment holds the standards that the arctic environment requires.

Day-2

Prep and short ski day

After breakfast we will do the last preparations and there will be time for some last minute shopping before we travel to the mountains where the trip starts. We start of softly on the first day with skiing only approximately 4 kilometers to the Jotka Mountain Cabin. Here you will be served dinner and stay for the night. In the afternoon you will be teamed up with 1 or 2 other people with whom you will work together and share tent on the trip. You will also be shown how to put up your tent and how to use some of the equipment that you will be using on the trip. There will also be time to make your final personal preparations and adjustments before the journey across the Finnmark Plateau starts. The guide will also go through safety routines, skiing routines and how to handle the dogs in a best possible way.

Day-3

First night in tents

After breakfast the trip starts. Alaska Huskies will help us pull some of the equipment. You will be surprised to see how much these dogs love to work. We will be skiing half of the day on tracks and rest of the day of tracks. This evening will be the first night in tents. We will now be well on our way and the landscape will be quite flat and mostly treeless.

Day-4

Fishing for arctic char, brown trout and grayling

The next camp will be set up by a good fishing lake and the rest of the day can be spent fishing on the ice if we arrive early. The lakes along our skiing route have mostly arctic char, brown trout and grayling. With some luck, we will catch some that we can prepare for dinner.

Day-5

A new day on skis.

The day starts slowly and if you like you can try some fishing again before lunch. After lunch we pack our camp and we ski the rest of the day before we make camp again.

Day-6

Ski to lookout

The first kilometers will be in gentle uphill terrain before we reach the highest point on the trip. Here you can enjoy a fabulous view and there will be time to take out your camera before we continue. We will be skiing a few more kilometers before we make camp for the night.

Day-7

Mountain Cabin

During this day we will be going from the barren mountains down into the forest. We spend this night at Ravnastua mountain cabin. This mountain cabin has a basic standard with no shower facilities. It is heated with wood burners and there are no televisions or other things to disturb the cozy and relaxed atmosphere. You will be sharing room with your trip mates.

Day-8

Back to Engholm

This will be the longest leg on the trip. We will be skiing the rest of the way to Engholm Husky Lodge. A total of approximately 22 kilometers. The first 15 kilometers will be on tracks and mostly downhill. The last 7 kilometers will be on the frozen river Karasjohka, also on tracks. After our arrival at the lodge we will gather in the lodge kitchen and dinner will be served in the warm and cozy lodge atmosphere. A nice wood heated sauna and outdoor hot tub is ready on request for those tempted.

Day-9

Departure

Breakfast and journey home.

Pygmy miles

Pygmy Miles Total

Challenge
Motorized Vehicle
Hiking
Bicycle
Sustainability
Miscellaneous
2050pygmy miles

Base Miles

You get one Pygmy Mile for every dollar you spend.

500pygmy miles

Ski miles bonus

On this journey, your transportation is powered by your own legs and supported by a dog sled team. You receive 10 Pygmy Miles for every 1 mile you ski.

500pygmy miles

Sustainable and responsible travel bonus

Eco Friendly Lodging

Your launching point is Engholm Husky lodge. The lodge is miles away from ordinary, using natural materials which were hand picked by the owner. There are no pesky emissions from heating, other than the smoke that rises from your fireplace in the lodge. Don’t worry, the fire keeps you toasty enough at night while ensuring a sustainable impact on the beautiful, windswept landscape it inhabits.

Indigenous Sami People

Optional add-on’s to visit the Sami people and support their economy are possible. The Sami people have long lived on the fringes of Scandinavian society. Only around 38,000 Sami live in Norwegian Finnmark, making the continuity of their cultural heritage of paramount, although lofty, importance. Tourism helps sustain the Sami’s culture by providing economic support for traditional activities, encouraging their usage and adoption for future generations.

Total Pygmy Miles

3050pygmy miles

Accommodation

 

Engholm Lodge

Karasjok

Designed and built by the owner, the Husky Lodge uses only natural materials to create a warm, cozy and environmentally friendly place to relax before and after your epic journey. As the name suggests, humans are not the only ones to inhabit this lodge: 40 to 50 highly trained sled dogs call Engholm their home as well. LINK TO ECO-LODGE Page.

Ravnastua Mountain Cabin

Finnmark Plateau

This mountain cabin has a basic standard with no shower facilities. It is heated with wood burners and there are no televisions or other things to disturb the cozy and relaxed atmosphere. You will be sharing room with your trip mates.

Practical info

Price

18,900 NOK 2017

USD prices will be determined by actual exchange rate.

The price include
  • Personal equipment (please check the equipment l
  • Pick up at Alta airport (6 or 7pm) or in Alta city
  • All meals from dinner on day 1 to breakfast on day 9,
  • Some equipment (specified in equipment list)
  • Lodging in Alta, Jotka, Ravastua and Karasjok
 The price does not include
  • Travel to / from Husky Lodge
  • Personal equipment (please check the equipment list)
  • Travel insurance
  • Alcoholic beverages

Lodging
You will be lodged at the truly unique Husky lodge in double rooms in cabins with one or two rooms. ­ Single rooms are available for an additional cost.
On the expedition you will sleep in cabins and tents.

Service categories

Consult & Book

Pygmy Elephant provides: 

  • Transfer arrangement: from Oslo to the lodge and further on to other locations
  • Pre-departure support: what to pack, arranging travel insurance and informing on travel advisories
  • 24 hour customer service: if something goes wrong, we have your back
  • Best Price Guarantee: if you find a better price on the internet, we'll match it
  • Pygmy Miles: receive discounts off future travel

When

jan
feb
mar
apr
may
jun
jul
aug
sep
oct
nov
dec
not available
average
optimal

Set Dates:
21st to 29th March 2016 (Easter)

10th to 18th April 2016

19th to 27th February 2017

12th to 20 March 2017

26th March to 3 April 2017

10th to 18th April 2017


Private: March and April dependent on availability. Call or inquire for details.

How

Privately guided

Join a guided tour

It is possible to both join an organized tour or create your own private expedition (minimum three participants).

Challenge Level

Technical Ability

Level : Low

Mental Strength

Level : Low

Physical Conditioning

Level : Medium

You do not have to be an experienced cross-country skier to do this trip. Several first time skiers have already done it. However if you wish to learn the basics of skiing or improve your cross-country skiing skills before you go, we can offer you a skiing instruction program at 10am in Alta, day one at the expedition. A reasonable level of fitness is necessary and some outdoor experience is helpful.

The American travel publiation Forbes Travel Guide has ranked the skiing trip on the Finnmark Plateau to be one of the 5 most stunning cross country skiing spots in the world.

Talk to our Adventure Expert

Our Managing Director, Andrew, has been to over 40 countries in his quest for the perfect adventure. He has biked the death road in Boiliva, trekked 500 miles across northern Spain on the Camino de Santiago, cycled from Brussels to Florence and hiked the five sacred mountains of China. Pygmy Elephant is how he spreads his love for adventure and self discovery in the world.