Trekking the Kungsleden

The King's Trail through Northern Sweden

By Mike Laing

Guide to the Kungsleden (King's Trail), Sweden's premier long-distance trek. Lying mostly within the Arctic Circle, the 460km route across Lappland is presented in 28 stages but can be walked in shorter sections if preferred. Includes an optional ascent of Kebnekaise, Sweden's highest peak, plus notes on huts and wild camping.

Seasons

Seasons

Best walked between late June and early September.
Centres

Centres

Abisko, Kebnekaise Fjällstation, Nikkaluokta, Saltoluokta, Kvikkjokk, Jäkkvik, Adolfsström, Bäverholmen, Ammarnäs, Hemavan
Difficulty

Difficulty

The five trail sections are non-challenging and suitable for all able walkers; a thru-hike is more demanding in terms of time, commitment and planning. Many opt to make use of the huts found on three of the trail's sections to minimise weight. Some sections are suitable for family groups.
Must See

Must See

Abisko, Nikkaluokta, Lapone Mountains, Arjeplog Fells, Aktse, Syterskalet and Tjäktjavagge glacial valleys, five national parks including Sarek, Kebnekaise (Sweden's highest peak at 2098m), Hemavan
ISBN
9781852849825
Availability
Published
Published
15 May 2019
Edition
First
Pages
272
Size
17.2 x 11.6 x 1.5cm
Weight
320g
  • Overview

    Sweden's most famous long-distance trail, the Kungsleden (King's Trail) traverses the land of the Sámi people and the midnight sun, showcasing an ever-changing landscape of snowy mountains, deep glacial valleys, open fell, expansive lakes and verdant forest. Stretching 460km between Abisko and Hemavan, around half the route lies within the Arctic Circle. The fully waymarked trail is comprised of five continuous and distinct sections: these can be walked individually or a thru-hike will take around a month. The guide also includes the popular Abisko to Nikkaluokta circuit, which can be completed in a week, and an ascent of Kebnekaise, Sweden's highest peak at 2098m.

    In addition to clear route description and mapping, you'll find a wealth of practical advice covering accommodation and facilities, equipment and resupply and detailed notes on how to get to and from the section start and finish-points. A Swedish and Fell Sámi glossary can be found in the appendix. Although there are plentiful opportunities for wild camping, three of the five trail sections are equipped with huts (many including a shop and a sauna) making them easily accessible to all. The remaining two sections have a more remote feel that will appeal to those intent on finding some solitude. To add further colour, there are seven mandatory lake crossings on the trail with the option of rowing or using the motorised service: full details are provided in the text.

    The Kungsleden passes through five national parks, including Sarek. Other highlights include the striking Tjäktjavagge glacial valley and the famous hay meadows of Aktse, perfectly framed by the azure Lájtávrre delta and the sheer chiselled face of Skierrffe. The Kungsleden invites you to step into a new world, and it may well prove to be the start of a long and rich association involving many repeated visits.

  • Contents

    Contents
    Introduction
    The subarctic environment
    Plants and animals
    Regional history
    When to go
    Planning your walk
    Transport
    Boat crossings
    Accommodation
    Hut life and facilities
    The truth about sauna
    Trail marking and access
    What to take
    Mapping and GPS
    Communications and electronics
    Resupply
    Safety and wellbeing
    Using this guide
    Section 1 – Abisko to Saltoluokta
    Stage 1 Abisko to Abiskojaure
    Stage 2 Abiskojaure to Alesjaure
    Stage 3 Alesjaure to Tjäktja
    Stage 4 Tjäktja to Sälka
    Stage 5 Sälka to Singi
    Stage 6 Singi to Kaitumjaure
    Stage 7 Kaitumjaure to Teusajaure
    Stage 8 Teusajaure to Saltoluokta via Vakkotavare
    Additional itineraries
    Additional itinerary 1 Singi to Nikkaluokta (alternative finish to Section 1)
    Additional itinerary 2 Kebnekaise summit
    Section 2 – Saltoluokta to Kvikkjokk
    Stage 9 Saltoluokta to Sitojaure
    Stage 10 Sitojaure to Aktse
    Stage 11 Aktse to Pårte
    Stage 12 Pårte to Kvikkjokk
    Section 3 – Kvikkjokk to Jäkkvik
    Stage 13 Kvikkjokk to Tsielekjåkkå
    Stage 14 Tsielekjåkkå to Gistojávrátj
    Stage 15 Gistojávrátj to Gásakláhko
    Stage 16 Gásakláhko to Vuonatjviken
    Stage 17 Vuonatjviken to Jäkkvik
    Section 4 – Jäkkvik to Ammarnäs
    Stage 18 Jäkkvik to Luvtávrre
    Stage 19 Luvtávrre to Bäverholmen
    Stage 20 Bäverholmen to Tjiegnatisjávrrie
    Stage 21 Tjiegnatisjávrrie to Rävfalls
    Stage 22 Rävfalls to Ammarnäs
    Section 5 – Ammarnäs to Hemavan
    Stage 23 Ammarnäs to Aigert
    Stage 24 Aigert to Serve
    Stage 25 Serve to Tärnasjö
    Stage 26 Tärnasjö to Syter
    Stage 27 Syter to Viterskals
    Stage 28 Viterskals to Hemavan

    Appendix A Summary of facilities
    Appendix B Useful contacts
    Appendix C Summary of boat crossings
    Appendix D Language

  • Updates
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    July 2019

    Page 30 - Transport

    Swedish regional airline Direktflyg is now serving Hemavan and Lycksele with daily flights (less Saturdays) from and to Stockholm, sometimes twice daily. With Nordica serving Arvidsjaur and Gällivare, all destinations previously left without service when Next Jet ceased operating are now being served once again. Bookings for Hemavan and Lycksele can be made via www.direktflyg.com taking care as some of the website is in Swedish only. Direktflyg’s summer schedule currently runs till mid-October.


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