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ski touring finnmark

Exploring northen Norway
Text: Bruce Goodlad, Foto: Bruce Goodlad

As an international mountain guide I am lucky enough to be able to live in the Alps and share my passion for adventurous skiing and mountaineering with my clients. I also get to travel to some amazing places to ski and climb.

Norway has always been on my list of favorite places to ski especially up in the far north where you can ski to sea level. Last winter I spent three weeks exploring different places starting on the Lyngen Peninsula near the arctic city of Tromso. Lyngen is a magical place and the first place I skied in Norway but it has become the victim of its own success with a guidebook and all the people that usually follow ones publication. After 10 days of great skiing we had had enough of sharing the mountains and headed further North into Finnmark.

The drive north took us through a hug variety if terrain everywhere we looked there was great skiing options. We based ourselves for a few days in some cabins on the shore Burfjord. Time spent looking at the map and driving round looking at the terrain gave us some great skiing days. The mountains were beginning to turn from cold winter snow to the transformed corn snow of spring. On the mountain this meant we could find powder skiing on the north aspects and spring snow conditions on the south the best of both worlds.

When you have my two favorite types of skiing then add in no people and no issues with altitude as we were skinning from sea level everyday with long descents all the way back to the high water mark and a back drop of Norway stunning northern Fjords and we were in skiing heaven. Our first tour found such good powder we went straight back up and did most of the tour again before heading off scoping out skiing objectives for the next day more powder and spring snow followed before an hour’s drive to Alta were we changed transport from car to boat.

The following week we based our skiing from the 99ft wooden sailing ship the Goxheim. This wonderful old boat was full of character and was our home and transport. Each day we would be dropped on a beach where we would done skins and head into the mountains. The mountains here could have been designed for skiing each mountain is about 1000m in altitude which means a perfect short tour or you can link mountains, make traverses ski couloirs or wide open bowls. By playing with the aspects we found great skiing every day. After skiing we would have a beer on deck then head off to the following days destination.  The beauty of skiing from the boat was that we saw no other people, we skied on islands only inhabited by Reindeer and a few local people. No roads and no other skiers having skied all over the world this is definitely the best place I have ski toured we are already planning our return for next winter.

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Bruce Goodlad Mountain Guide

Bruce Goodlad is an IFMGA mountain guide and outdoor author living and working full time in the Alps.