Friday Photo #286 – Lofotodden Nasjonalpark

Lofotodden national park - Friday Photo #286

Photo: Twilight view over the wild north coast of Moskenesøy, soon to be part of Lofotodden Nasjonalpark, Lofoten Islands, Norway. September 7, 2017. 20:30

After a process of more than 10 years, and with a fair amount of local opposition on Lofoten, last week the Norwegian government announced the creation of Norway’s 40th national park – Lofotodden Nasjonalpark. (NRK article here). More or less covering the whole northern coast of Moskenesøy before wrapping around the western tip of Lofoten, the park will include many of Lofoten’s most wild and rugged mountains and valleys.

Some of the opposition comes from loss of usage rights among people who might have property within the new park boundaries. But there is also the fear that the national park will bring an unsustainable amount of visitors to Lofoten. This, I disagree with.

In my opinion, the current rate of visitors on Lofoten is already unsustainable with the current infrastructure. And popular areas which will now be within the new park, such as Kvalvika or Bunes beaches, have no facilities to manage the waste of the thousands of campers each summer season – that is a lot of shits being buried under rocks, at best, and otherwise often sat out in the open, dirty toilet paper blowing away in the wind.

Hopefully, if done right (which I’m not 100% confident of), the new national park can bring with it the funds to help build facilities needed for current and future use of this fragile arctic landscape. And beyond facilities, hopefully the authority of now being within a national park will also lead to better education of visitors and their increased respect for the land. This is just my hope though, what will actually happen will be seen in the years to come. And hopefully it doesn’t mean that I now need to pay to park when I visit my favorite mountains or beaches, with otherwise no further benefit.

Camera Info:
Nikon D800
Nikon 14-24mm f/2.8
ISO 100
f 10
.8 second
WB Daylight

Friday Photo #285 – Summer Gloom

Kvalvika Beach - Friday Photo #285

Photo: Misty clouds conceal the summit of Ryten from Kvalvika beach, Moskenesøy, Lofoten Islands, Norway. July 9, 2016. 18:53

Summer 2018 seems to be on hold for the moment. After a dry and cold winter, it now seems we have arrived at a wet and cold summer, with the thermostat struggling to reach even 10˚C most days in June so far and heavy grey clouds hanging over the mountains. Quite a contrast to June last year, which had weeks of warm sunny weather. But that is the nature of the weather up hear – no predictability at all. Some summers are good, others are bad.

Even in bad weather however, there can be a quite beauty to the landscape here. And if you, and your camera, can handle a bit of rain – though I must admit I try and avoid rain as much as possible, I’m Californian after all… – there is still plenty out there to see and experience. And while I would prefer perfect sunny and warm summers, you need to bad days to make the good ones stand out even more.

So if you’re heading up here soon, don’t forget your jacket!

Camera Info:
Nikon D800
Nikon 24mm f/3.5 tilt-shift
ISO 50
f 16
6 seconds
WB Daylight
6 stop ND filter
2 images – top, bottom

Friday Photo #284 – Gimsøy Summer

Gimsøy Summer - Friday Photo #284

Photo: 01:00 am summer light over Gimsøy, Lofoten Islands, Norway. June 12, 2017. 01:04

I have previously posted an image from this fanstastic June night – Friday Photo ###. That one was looking directly into the sun. This is just a few meters away, looking across the soft pastel light that was falling over the landscape. As much as the northern lights keep me up late in winter, that can involve a bit of suffering at times. In summer, under the midnight sun, it is generally just pure joy. Lofoten really is a land for insomniacs!

While the sun had been shining bright and strong a little while earlier, it eventually sunk into some clouds lower on the horizon. The light was still warm, but now with a gentle softness. Nights like this are why I moved here, and with as many reasons as there are to visit at other times of the year, a warm summer night under the midnight sun is simply wonderful. Something that everyone should experience once.

Camera Info:
Nikon D800
Nikon 14-24mm f/2.8
ISO 80
f 11
1/6 second
WB Daylight

Friday Photo #283 – Summer Mood

Cotton Grass - Friday Photo #283

Photo: Cottongrass and evening light, Moskenesøy, Lofoten Islands, Norway. June 12, 2017. 22:58

Cottongrass is a familiar plant in the summer mountains of Lofoten. It´s also a good marker of where not to put a tent!

Wandering around in the hilly landscape of Yttersandheia one June evening, the backlit ´cotton´ with the low evening sun caught my eye. The sky was a bit boring anyhow, and I was having trouble finding a nice composition. So I just decided to lay on the ground and look for something abstract.

Nothing special here, just a nice summer mood…

Camera Info:
Nikon D800
Nikon 70-200mm f/4
ISO 125
f 5.6
1/500 second
WB Daylight

Friday Photo #282 – June Mountain Snow

June Mountain Snow - Friday Photo #282

Photo: June mountain snow on Munken, Moskenesøy, Lofoten Islands, Norway. June 10, 2016. 21:51

It´s June and the trails of Lofoten will soon be filling up with hikers. And while the coast of Lofoten is green and beginning to fill with flowers, winter is still holding on in the higher mountains of Lofoten, especially in the more inland area. So while many trails will begin to be snow free, particularly anything that follows a ridge or is in close proximity of the sea, snow may still stop access, especially without proper equipment, on some mountains.

Here, looking towards Munken, which rises to nearly 800 meters, there is still significant snow coverage across much of the route. Will this stop you from getting to the top? Possibly. And better to be safe if unsure.

And beyond snow potentially blocking a route, June is an elevated period for rockfall as the mountains begin to thaw and fall apart. It is generally best to avoid any trails which travel under exposed cliffs.

Camera Info:
Nikon D800
Nikon 24-70mm f/2.8
ISO 100
f 11
1/80 seconds
WB Daylight