Winter Lofoten Islands Landscape

Traveling To Lofoten In February

In just over a month from now, I’ll be walking off the ferry in Moskenes and be on the Lofoten Islands once again.  I’m excited!  I wasn’t exactly sure if this trip would happen, but it seems I can’t stay away from the islands for too long.  This will be my 12th trip to the islands, and 4th in the last year.  I guess if I’m not allowed to live in Lofoten/Norway, I might as will visit as much as possible!

As usual, I’ll be flying into Bodø, arriving in the early evening.  I usually have time to drop by a shop and buy stove fuel, which gives me more flexibility once on the islands and not have to look for it right away.  I have also specifically chosen to arrive on a Tuesday so I can take the 01:30 ferry to Moskenes early Wednesday morning.  The benefit of taking this sailing is that the ferry first stops at Værøy, instead of the usual direct sailing.  The result is that I get a few more hours sleep on the (relatively) comfortable seats of the ferry, as compared to the uncomfortable floor/chairs of the waiting room in Bodø.  The ferry still arrives a few hours before sunrise, but depending on the weather, this leaves me with a few options as how to start the trip.

If the weather is bad, I’ll most likely take the bus directly to Stamsund and pickup a rental car which will also serve as my home while I’m on the islands.  If for some unusual reason I arrive to calm conditions, I’ll look into the possibilities of hiking up Reinebringen and an overnight bivy on the summit.  Another possibility would be to take the ferry to either Bunes or Horseid beaches and try to camp there.  But at this point, it’s completely useless to try and plan as there is no way of knowing what conditions will be when I arrive.  I just have to get there and see.  Either way, I’m hoping to be a little more ‘adventurous’ on this trip.  I dream of taking a photo of Northern Lights in the sky over Reine while on the summit of Reinebringen.  Wish me luck!

And, if by chance you’ll be on the Islands between Feb 13 – March 1, get in contact and perhaps we can cross paths at some point…

7 replies
  1. Stefan says:

    Hi Cody,

    first your website is awesome and helps me a lot of planning my first trip to the islands on february.
    Unfortunately we can´t met up there, because I will stay there from 31.01 – 10.02.
    I´m a landscape photographer and of course I will travelling around in my rental car.
    My question: Can you recommend a car without 4WD in winter? I already rent this car so it´s the only possibility for me – just curious :-).
    Thank you for your time.


    • Cody says:

      Hi Stefan, I sent you an email…

      But to answer the question here: A normal (non-4WD) is fine for Lofoten in winter. With few exceptions, most of the roads are pretty flat and they do a good job of keeping up the roads during a storm. The Norwegian studded winter tires make it feel almost like normal driving. The main conditions to be cautious of is if the temperatures increase and it rains, then the roads can become covered in a layer of wet ice; and that is scary to drive!

  2. Wayne says:

    Hi Cody,
    Stumbled on your website while searching the web for information on winters in Lofoten. Love your images! I will be making my first trip to the archipelago in late February — will arrive the 27th in Svalvaer and leave on the 5th; I know, not enough time but that’s what I’ve got… I’m just an amateur photographer, but have lots of enthusiasm and energy and would love to share a sunrise if we find ourselves in the same area! Best,

  3. strOOp says:

    Hi Cody,
    your site and photographs are great.
    Thanks for useful information about winter in Lofoten.
    I will be there for first time between February 8th and 17th.
    and want to make photos of all I can 🙂
    Accomodation: four days in Ballstad Hostel and next four days in Å Hostel.
    I have the same idea: to make photos from Reinebringen
    so it’s great chance to meet.
    Can you tell me, what type of equipment sholuld I take?
    Snowshoes TSL 438 ACCESS will be enough?
    Or I need crampons and ice-axe?
    Thanks for any answer.


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