Heidi from the mountains
The Lofoten hiking experience
‘It is totally silent here’ is what I would have said two weeks ago. But now I do not hear this silence anymore. I hear the ocean gently murmuring 700 meters below me. I hear seagulls screeching and fighting. Far away, I hear a light breeze drifting through the grass around our tent. It sounds like a very majestic concert, directed by the biggest artist on our planet: nature.
For the last two weeks my sister and I have been lucky enough to call this wonderful place our home. It is our kitchen, our bedroom, our living room, our bathroom, our gym and most important: our classroom. It is the place where we learn step by step who we are, what we really need and what makes us happy – and we’ve quickly learned that the things we really need are very few.
Time is one thing we’ve found that we don’t “need.” I have no idea what time or what day it is. The only way we know that it might be late in the day is when the sun approaches the horizon. But, right when it should set it makes a curve and rises again. We are currently experiencing the midnight sun above the Arctic Circle on the Lofoten Islands in Northern Norway. During days of good weather, this means darkness never arrives and the sun is shining 24 hours a day.
Lofoten has always been a place high on our bucket list. When the day came that we would be able to visit, we knew we wanted to live a fully authentic experience and to get to know the islands profoundly. This led to our decision to hike the 200km from the North to the South of the islands, sleeping in our tent and living completely independent. Traveling that way gives us the freedom to choose our own route, pace and to have the ability to forget about time.
Compared to other places in the North, the Lofoten islands have very stable temperatures and a mild climate – which was one of the reasons we decided to head this way. Another reason we headed to Lofoten was the incredible beauty of the area: ocean meets land, sharp and steep mountains meet turquoise water. Looking at the beaches in this area and ignoring the temperature and the fresh wind from the North Pole, you could easily believe we were in Hawaii or in New Zealand. This combination makes the islands a paradise for hikers in summer and for skiers in winter.
Hiking for eight to ten hours every day and being disconnected from the world feels a bit like living in a bubble, a very beautiful bubble.
It is an awesome way to connect with yourself and to think your thoughts until the end without being distracted from anything. Our phones are switched off most of the time and life is very simple. My sister and I know each other by heart and we feel very comfortable hiking next to each other for hours without the need of speaking a single word.
But now my sister speaks. Her voice is loud and fits perfectly in this majestic concert of nature I am listening. While I lay in our tent writing these lines, she is saying the most beautiful words I could wish for after this long day in the mountains: ‘Pasta is ready!’.