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Henningsvær – Lofoten Islands

Travel photography, Henningsvaer, Lofoten Islands, Norway

Harbor reflection at Henningsvær, Lofoten Islands, Norway.  I think it’s with good reason Henningsvaer is nicknamed the ‘Venice of the North.’

Å I Lofoten – Lofoten Islands winter

A I Lofoten in winter, Lofoten Islands, Norway

Winter view from Å (I Lofoten) towards the southern end of the islands.  The peaks of Værøy can be seen in the far distance.  This was the 6th of January, the first day the sun rose above the horizon since the middle of December.

Reine – Lofoten Islands

Landscape photo Reine in Autumn, Lofoten Islands, Norway

Autumn, Reine, Lofoten Islands, Norway.

What a difference two months make can make to a scence.   The Lofoten Islands have become somewhat of a long term project of mine.  I was there 3 times in the last year alone and have a rough plan to be back again in July, as I haven’t been there during summer since 2006, so I need some better coverage of the islands during that time of year.  So far I’ve been there in: January, March, April, May, July, August, September, and October.  So I’ve still got a few months to fill in.  And one might think what difference does a month or two really make, but with a place in the far north, there are quite dramatic changes in scenery as the year passes on and I think all of it is interesting to see.

Reine in Winter, Lofoten Islands, Norway

Reine in Winter, Lofoten Islands, Norway.

Unstad – Lofoten

Snow covered beach, Unstad, Lofoten islands, Norway

Unstad beach, Lofoten islands, Norway.

An unrelenting storm had been hanging over the islands all day, but the weather on the islands can be quite localized, so I took a gamble that the north side might have some better weather, and indeed it did.  Emerging from the tunnel to Unstad, the snow had stopped and been divereted around the mountains that surround the village.  I wish I had arrived earlier as the day was already late and darkness – and more snow – was soon to come.

Lofoten Islands – Kjerkfjord

Landscape travel stock photography: Kjerkefjorden, Reine, Lofoten islands, Norway

Kjerkfjord as seen from near Reine, Lofoten islands, Norway.

This is the light at around 1:30 pm on the afternoon of January 6, the first day since mid December where the sun once again appears on the horizon at 68˚ north.  Got lucky to have calm winds and mostly clear skies on this day.  Imagine more or less the same light like this lasting for hours.  Magical.

Lofoten Autumn Snow

Lofoten islands panoramic landscape photography: Autumn snow covers rocky coastline

Autumn snow on rocky coast at Stamsund, Lofoten Islands, Norway.

Utakleiv Beach

Lofoten islands Norway travel photography: rocky beach at Utakleiv in storm

Utakleiv, Lofoten islands, Norway.

Vestfjord

Vestfjord viewed from Stamsund, Lofoten islands, Norway

On a nicer day, the Norwegian mainland would be visible in the distance.  The Vestfjord as viewed from Stamsund, Lofoten islands, Norway.

Unstad

Unstad beach, Lofoten islands, Norway: travel landsacpe photography

last light at Unstad, Lofoten islands, Norway.

Lofoten Islands – Stockfish

Cod stockfish hang to dry in winter, lofoten islands, Norway

I think I’ve said it before, that the economy of the Lofoten islands runs off basically two things: German tourists in the summer and cod stockfish in the winter.  During the winter months, Atlantic Cod migrate into the waters of the Vestfjord for spawning, where they have been met by Norwegian fishermen since the days of the Vikings.  One would think that north of the arctic circle would not be the most hospitable place to be during this time of year, but the gulf stream keeps the Lofoten islands relatively mild temperature wise.   Though an arctic gale is nothing to laugh at, having heard stories of winds so fierce that they have literally moved houses.

Fishing boat in Kjerkefjord near Reine, Lofoten Islands, Norway

Empty stockfish drying rack in winter, lofoten islands, Norway

Cod stockfish hang to dry in winter, lofoten islands, Norway

Cod stockfish hang to dry in winter, lofoten islands, Norway

Cod stockfish heads, lofoten islands, Norway