Mountainbiking in Northern Norway and especially in the Lyngenfjord region is an arctic experience. Trails up to almost 1000 m.a.s.l., views of the impressive Lyngenalps and the Lyngenfjord, the midnightsun that allows for trips 24/7 and in the autumn the possibility to see the northern lights.
The village of Skibotn and the Skibotnvalley is the centre of the mountainbike activities in the Lyngenfjord region and therefore the most information is about Skibotn. Also the nearby valleys Kåfjorddalen, Signaldalen, Kitdalen and the mountains inbetween is an Eldorado for mountainbikers who are looking for something special. Around Lyngseidet you will also find some trails.
Mountainbiking in Skibotn
The dry climate in Skibotn and the Skibotnvalley ensures that you already early in the season can mountainbike here. The Lyngen Alps with the mountain Jiekkivarri (1834 meters) protects Skibotn from the wet weather coming from the Atlantic and is the reason for the dry climate. Skibotn have a rainfall of 300 mm per year, which is almost 10 times less than Bergen in southern Norway.
Best time of year for Mountainbiking
Already in April/May, when there still is a lot of snow other places in Northern Norway you can go mountainbiking in the Skibotn region. From the middle of May the midnightsun is here, providing daylight 24 hours a day, giving you great experiences all day long.
From July, when the snow has melted in the mountains, you can go higher in the mountains with the mountainbike. You will find several trails and smaller roads leading up to about 1000 meters providing great views of the region.
August can be considered the best month as there is no snow in the mountains, all trails are clear and it is still daylight for almost 24 hours a day.
Also September can be beautiful, with the autumn colours and northern lights dancing across the sky in the evenings.
In October the first snow normally falls in the mountains, it gets colder and darker which makes the forest-trails around Skibotn more attractive before the snow falls there as well.
There are many single trails and forest roads in the valleys. In the mountains it is generally forest roads, ATV roads or construction roads for the power lines and/or the hydroelectric powerplants which you can use. There are also scattered hiking trails in the mountains, which can be difficult to navigate due to obstacles on the trails. Close to Skibotn, is also a partially prepared Downhill trail (“Hengen Ned”) which invites to fast downhill runs.
In general there are no marked mountainbike trails, with the exception of the Lavkarittet trail.
You will find a selection of tours here, in and around Skibotn. Furthermore you are reliant upon having your own map with you in order to find trails.
A possibility to experience new trails is to participate in the “Stifestival” which happens every august. At Stifestivalen you will meet likeminded people and join different guided tours in and around Skibotn.
There are some popular bike events in the region. The offroadrace “Lavkarittet”, as well as the Skibotn Stifestival in Skibotn and “Lyngen Exp Enduro” in Lyngseidet.
The Skibotn Stifestival is a gathering of likeminded people, interested in mountainbiking and downhill. Every year in August this festival takes place between a weekend, Friday – Sunday. Several guides ensure that you find the right trails and the offered guided tours are quite different so there is something for everyone.
Strandbu Camping is the basecamp for this festival. Here you can put up your tent, camp in your car or rent one of the cabins. In the evenings we gather around the open fire or inside the big tent. The meals will also be served here and on Saturday evenings there is usually live music.
The website for the festival: http://www.skibotnstifestival.com
Sign up for the festival 2016 is here.
Lyngen Exp Enduro
This mountainbike and downhill gathering is a new festival in the region around Lyngseidet, showcasing what this region has to offer.
The basecamp is Magic Mountain Lodge in Lyngseidet, where you everyone can stay and eat together. Different guided tours will be offered and the social aspect of the festival is a big part of the gathering.
The first weekend in August the race “Lavkarittet” takes place in Storfjord. It is the biggest offroad race in Northern Norway with over 500 participants. The event is divided into three different difficulty levels, so that everyone can participate.
The “Mini-Lavka” is for kids under 10 years and is 2,5 km.
The “Lavka30” is for 10 – 16 years and for those who want to participate in a shorter race.
The main race “Lavkarittet” is 65 km and starts in Hatteng. At first you follow the gravelroad up Kitdalen, before heading up the mountain. The trail becomes narrower once you get to the mountain and the views more impressive. After you pass the highest point, it goes fast down the Skibotnvalley and after 65 km you reach Skibotn and the goal.
Professional mountainbikers from the whole of Scandinavia participates, as well as amateurs who want to experience the mountains here. Lavkarittet is really an offroad race for everone.
More information and signing up here.
Accomodation in Skibotn
Olderelv Camping (Cabins and Tent): Phone: +47 77 71 54 44, www.olderelv.no
Strandbu Camping (Cabins and Tent): Phone: +47 77 71 53 40, www.strandbu.no
Caravanpark Slettnes (Tent): Phone: +47 922 91 956, www.lyngentourist.com
Helligskogen Fjellstue (Hostel, 30 km away from Skibotn): Phone: +47 901 26 133, http://helligskogen.no/helligskogen-2.html
Eating in Skibotn
Supermarket Joker: Mon – Thur: 09.00 – 18.00, Fri: 09.00 – 19.00 and Sat: 09.00 – 17.00
Olderelv Camping and the Petrolstation Statoil serve fastfood.
The only bikeshop in the region is located in Lyngseidet. Elektro-Sport, Strandveien 16. 9060 Lyngseidet, Ph. +47 77 71 16 00
To the north, there is one in Storslett: MX-Sport Nordtro AS, Fosseng 2, 9151 Storslett. Ph. +47 940 09 482 and to the south there are several in Tromsø or there is one in Setermoen.