West Lofoten Hikes

New Ebook – West Lofoten Hikes

West Lofoten Hikes

I’m super happy to announce the release of my 6th ebook! West Lofoten – A Mountain Photography Guide to 24 Hikes on Moskenesøy and Flakstadøy

MORE INFO HERE

Like the title says, this guide focuses on the mountains of west Lofoten – my home for the last year now and where I have spent a majority of my time.

Available for $14. The book is 239 pages long with 150 image, and somewhere around 28,000 words. This is my biggest work yet and took up a lot of my time over the last months – not counting all the hiking that needed to be done over the past summer! But I think the effort was worth it and I’m quite happy with the result.

January sun over Skjelfjord, Lofoten Islands, Norway

Return Of The Sun

January sun over Skjelfjord, Lofoten Islands, Norway

Hello old friend, it has been a while. Welcome back to the north. I hope you had some nice adventures down south and I wish you had time to stay to tell me your stories, but I know you can’t right now. Soon though, you’ll keep me up all night for our midnight conversations during my journeys among the empty mountains. And that I look forward to!

I saw the sun today! For the first time in more than a month. While the polar night has technically been over for about a week or so, heavy clouds have draped Lofoten during most of that time, concealing any views of the southern horizon. But today, for a few brief moments, there was light again!

Over the coming weeks the days with lengthen at an incredible pace and soon I will forget what these dark days were like. This was my first polar night in the north, and while I was cold, lonely, and bored at times, I am glad I stayed for the experience and look forward to the next one – kinda…

January sun over Nesland, Lofoten Islands, Norway

Photo: Stormy sea crashes against the coast at Nesland, Lofoten Islands, Norway. January 12, 2017

Reka - Vesterålen, Norway

Reka – Vesterålen

Reka - Vesterålen, Norway

Photo: Reka rising over the frozen landscape, Vesterålen, Norway. November 2016

An October visit by a friend from the south had introduced the name ‘Reka’ to our minds. Originally calling the mountain ‘Shrimp,’ the Norwegian translation from Reke, we later learned that the name comes from an older Sami word for shove – likely due to the shape of the mountainl. Anyhow, the idea was in our minds, now to wait for the weather.

In early November came a good weather window. And after going to a showing of the Reel Rock film tour in Svolvær on Monday night, we departed early Tuesday for Vesterålen.

Arriving around noon, the clear weather had brought arctic temperatures, much colder than we had on Lofoten! I found a place to park by the cemetery and then we began our hike into the frozen landscape. We only had rough directions, and the cold made these difficult to follow. At first we tried to go the direct route, across some tidal rocks at the end of a fjord, but the water was too high and the rocks too icy, so we needed another 45 minutes to make a detour around the end of the fjord, before picking up the trail again.

We had been hoping to make make camp just below the ridge, and the start of the proper climbing. But after several hours of hiking, and with the growing darkness, we arrived at a frozen bogland, with a small flowing stream, that we both thought would make a good base camp. We just needed to get up an hour earlier for the hike up to the ridge.

The world around us was cold and frozen, the low November sun no longer shining upon it. Luckily though, the frozen land let us find a nice flat spot for the tent, which in summer would otherwise be the middle of a horrendous bog.

Surrounded by fallen birch trees, we did our best to make a fire. But after some effort and multiple attempts, which even involved using my stove, we gave up. It was too cold and all the wood was covered in rime ice. But at least the effort of trying to make a fire kept us warm for a little while longer.

Later, the northern light arrived over camp, and I had to go out for at least a few photos.

The night was cold, Bitterly so. This was the first real night of winter for us. It didn’t help that my sleeping pad has developed a bit of a leak, and required multiple inflatings during the night; when I can feel the shivering cold soaking through my bones from the ground. I didn’t sleep much.

Ylva wakes up early as always, to cook a proper breakfast and have a hot cup of tea. I try and sleep longer, content with some frozen cheese and salami. By 07:00 we were out of the tent and ascending into the frozen landscape. We had no greater plans other than to see what we would find. The cold had taken the energy from both of us this night.

Arriving at the ridge, the sun brought warmth to our bodies. It was then that Ylva discovered that she had forgotten her climbing shoes in the tent! Anyhow, the day was still young and so we harnessed up.

I lead the first, easy pitch. No gear was really needed, but I put in a few pieces for peace of mind. Ylva arrived and then took the lead for pitch 2. Soon I followed and attempted pitch 3, but with our little info for the route, I wasn’t sure I was going the right way, as it seemed a bit too hard – and I couldn’t see any bolts, which should have been there. So I turned back. Ylva made an attempt in her mountain boots. But it was too hard and feeling too insecure. By now it was after 13:00 in the afternoon, and the shadows were growing long. So just a short way from the summit, we decided to turn around, and hopefully return another day.

The world was growing dark by the time we reached our base camp and packed up. Making quick progress, we descended the mountain as quickly as possible, but it still took us another 2+ hours, half of which by headlamp though the frozen landscape which sparkled like a disco light, until we reached my van again. Exhausted and cold.

We headed down to Sortland to try and find some food, ending up at some not very good pizza place, before continuing further home to Lofoten until I was too tired to drive anymore, and we found a place to camp for the night somewhere near Raftsundet.

Despite not making the summit, it was a fun adventure! And I look forward to going back in the longer days of summer to make another attempt…

Reka - Vesterålen, Norway

Photo: Hiking into the frozen landscape towards Reka, Vesterålen, Norway. November 2016

 

Reka - Vesterålen, Norway

Photo: Reka rises over our base camp, Vesterålen, Norway. November 2016

Reka - Vesterålen, Norway

Photo: Attempt at an evening campfire in the frozen land, Vesterålen, Norway. November 2016

Reka - Vesterålen, Norway

Photo: Attempt at an evening campfire in the frozen land, Vesterålen, Norway. November 2016

Reka - Vesterålen, Norway

Photo: Northern lights shine over camp below Reka, Vesterålen, Norway. November 2016

Reka - Vesterålen, Norway

Photo: At the bast of the climbing route on Reka, Vesterålen, Norway. November 2016

Reka - Vesterålen, Norway

Photo: Happy in the sun at pitch 2 on Reka, Vesterålen, Norway. November 2016

Reka - Vesterålen, Norway

Photo: Ylva on lead for pitch 2 on Reka, Vesterålen, Norway. November 2016

Reka - Vesterålen, Norway

Photo: Last sunlight before turning around at pitch 3 on Reka, Vesterålen, Norway. November 2016

Reka - Vesterålen, Norway

Photo: Down from the climb, our basecamp in deep shadows for the hike out, Vesterålen, Norway. November 2016

Polar Night - Lofoten Islands, Norway

Lofoten Mørketid

Polar Night - Lofoten Islands, Norway

Photo: Morning twilight over Blekktind and Flakstadpollen, Lofoten Islands, Norway. December 2016

Lofoten has entered the time of year known as the Mørketid – literally translating to ‘dark time,’ but better known as the polar night. The sun no longer rises above the horizon and the ‘days’ become gradually darker and shorter until the winter solstice – the longest night of the year.

Most of December has been on the stormy and, for the arctic circle, warm side. Lots of wind and rain have been blowing through the fjord lately, my house moving and shaking as night after night of storms have passed. However, Sunday brought cold and clear skies over the islands.

With the sun below the horizon, the day is little more than a few hours of a soft twilight glow. But in fine weather such as this, the light is simply magical, and one forgets that the sun will never rise, as it doesn’t really need to.

The wind and rain are back again for the next week, but hopefully there will be some more days like this before the sun returns in early January.

Polar Night - Lofoten Islands, Norway

Photo: Skjelfjord noon, Lofoten Islands, Norway. December 2016

Polar Night - Lofoten Islands, Norway

Photo: Skjelfjord twilight, Lofoten Islands, Norway. December 2016

Polar Night - Lofoten Islands, Norway

Photo: Stjerntind twilight, Lofoten Islands, Norway. December 2016

Cody Duncan Lofoten - National Geographic Traveler

Lofoten In National Geographic Traveler Magazine

Cody Duncan Lofoten - National Geographic Traveler

I’m happy to have one of my images, Northern Lights over Osltind, in the current issue of National Geographic traveler magazine.

I had seen the image online in the article – about 24 hours of time around the world – my image is midnight, but hadn’t yet seen it in print until I was flying home from Spain on Sunday/Monday. Waiting for my flight back to Leknes from Bodø, I took a quick browse of the magazine section, and they had the US version, so there my image was. Good I didn’t buy a cope (105 NOK, ouch!) as just as I was walking out the door today the postman showed up with a package for me – two copies of the magazine courtesy of NG. Takk!

See the article online: Around the World in 24 Hours

Beaches Of Lofoten Ebook

Beaches of Lofoten – Second Edition

Beaches Of Lofoten Ebook

I’m happy to announce that my Beaches of Lofoten ebook has just received an update.

Click here for more info.

The updates includes two new mountain hikes for Nubben and Flakstadtind, both on Flakstadøy. As well as many new images bringing the guide to 208 pages in total!

For those of you who purchased the first edition, you should receive an email sometime today with a link for a free download to the updated version.

Along with this update, all my ebooks have received a price increase to $14.

Reflection of northern lights in sky over mountains of Flakstadøy, Lofoten Islands, Norway

Northern Lights Season Begins On Lofoten

Reflection of northern lights in sky over mountains of Flakstadøy, Lofoten Islands, Norway

Photo: Northern Lights over Flakstadøy, Lofoten Islands, Norway. Sept 2, 2017

Friday night was the beginning on the northern lights season on Lofoten for me. While there had been some previous lights in the end of August, I wasn’t able to go out and photograph them, unfortunately. But Friday was a night worth waiting for! With clear skies and almost no wind, the sky repeatedly erupted in dancing auroras almost from horizon to horizon. One of the better aurora displays I have photographed recently, and much better than anything I had earlier in the winter.

And while I’m a bit sad the summer is gone, it was a full and adventurous one for me – largely the reason for the lack of blog posts here, I have been too busy to keep up with things – I hiked many new mountains and shot some of my best imagery yet of Lofoten. Even though I’m still dealing with paperwork and bureaucracy nearly 5 months after officially moving here, it was a good choice! So with no more midnight sun hikes this year, I’m greatly looking forward to the aurora nights!

I will try and keep things updated here more frequently. But for current Lofoten info, always head over to 68north.com – where I keep things more current.

 

Aurora corona fills sky over Lofoten Islands, Norway

Photo: Aurora corona over Flakstadøy, Lofoten Islands, Norway. Sept 2, 2017

Lofoten Photo Workshop - August 2017

New Lofoten Photo Workshops Summer 2017

Lofoten Photo Workshop - August 2017

Along with the already Scheduled workshops, I have just published three new Lofoten photo tours for summer and autumn 2017.

Midnight Mountains – June 24 – 30, 2017

Summer Twilight – August 12 – 18, 2017

Exploring Autumn – September 23 – 29, 2017

Overall, I will be keeping a slightly lighter tour schedule in 2017 than I did in 2016.  I had more private tour bookings than I was expecting, which at times left me away from home for weeks on end. I am also simultaneously working on several new ebooks for both Lofoten and other areas in Norway and Sweden, all of which all take a lot of field, photography, and research time. I have already fallen a bit behind my deadlines for 2016 and had to cancel a few photo/hiking trips all together – which in the short seasons of the Scandinavian arctic, basically delays things by a year. Being busy is a good problem to have, but the key is finding balance…

EBOOK - Kungsleden South

New Ebook – Kungsleden South

EBOOK - Kungsleden South

I’m happy to announce that my 5th ebook is now available: Kungsleden South – Hiking From Ammarnäs to Hemavan

Now available for $7, this guide covers the southernmost section of Sweden’s Kungsleden trail.

CLICK HERE for more info.

 

Lofoten Islands Photo Workshop - Distant Beaches

Lofoten Photography Workshop – Distant Beaches – July 2016

Lofoten Islands Photo Workshop - Distant Beaches

DISTANT BEACHES – LOFOTEN OUTDOOR PHOTOGRAPHY WORKSHOP

July 23 – 29, 2016

With the sun setting just below the horizon each night, the end of July brings the twilight nights to Lofoten. No longer the midnight sun, and not yet dark, the ‘night’ is one long transition from sunset to sunrise. We will use these long days and glowing nights to explore and camp in some of Lofoten’s best destinations.

This Photography workshop is more than just a tour of Lofoten, it will be a total outdoor experience of the Islands. The heart of this trip will consist of a 4 day – 3 night hiking and camping tour across the wild northern coast of Moskenesøy, where we will take turns watching the sun sink into the sea from sandy beaches and mountain summits.

This is a photography workshop about experiencing the best of wild Lofoten in some of my favorite destinations across the islands.

More info and booking | Distant Beaches