Riksgränsen Review

by: anonymous_user - Mar 18, 2008

  • Overall Rating 5
  • Family Friendly 1
  • All-Mtn. Terrain 5
  • Terrain Park 0
  • Nightlife 3

    Date Visited: Mar 18, 2008

Full review

Riksgränsen is the place for the serious skier and an unusual experience not to be missed. Being the most northern skiresort´in the world, the season lasts until late June and from May in the never setting midnight sun. The skiarea is all above the treeline and some of it is in Norway, hence the name Riksgränsen, The State Border, in plain English. The sea is a few Km away, making temperatures seldom drop to unbearable levels.
The pisted slopes are ok but only fun for a couple of days. However, this place is an offpist paradise which lasts for many, many uncrossed tracks in all difficult levels. This is all reachable from the toplift but if making a little effort an even greater award awaits by going up Nordalsfjäll by foot. The climb takes 20-30 min if in normal shape. On top you can see the sea and a fantastic view of the Sapmi land and mountains. When going down you can once again chose according to skill all from the very extreme to the gentle. To the left of the climb up to the top is the steep where a yearly extreme skiing competition takes place. On top of this there is a wide choice of Helisking where you can get some serious droplevels in the close by Kebnekaise massif.
The afterski is either good or bad depending on season. From May it's busy and crowded in a mix of local swedes, norse, sapmi (don't call them Laps, they don't like that) and internationals. In the low season there is a perfect feeling of having a whole mountain for yourself, the same goes for the afterski ofcourse.
A word of warning though. This place can be a harsh tutor. There are practically no forbidden areas or skiing lines in riksgränsen. It is entirely your own responsibility to get out of trouble and chances of fast help are slim if needed. It is easy to find yourself in very steep grounds if unaware. Your worst enemy of Riksgränsen is the infamous "flatlight". The light of the sea reflects on the slopes making the contours impossible to see. The sight ahead is not affected much but looking down the slope you only see milk. It might come and go in a second making in very hard to ski.
Although remote, getting here is easy by air or train. By lowcost airplane from Stockholm to Kiruna you are in the pist in three hours. The train stops at the bottom of the slope with direct trains from Stockholm. The approach by train is not forgotten easily; reindeer herds, vast landscapes, polarlight and much more.
Don't miss this place, in right condition a paradise, intresting enough in all if you are a keen skiier.