Day 11: Skierffe – Aktse
The alarm clock rings early in the morning. I’ve a hard time getting up. It’s cold again, and the sky is clear. It’s just the beginning of twilight. Up here in the north, twilight lasts much longer than in Central Europe, so I’m not in a hurry at all. I eat a little bit before I get dressed. My backpack is empty except for photo gear, tripod and water bottle.
I walk quickly towards the summit. Smaller areas of water are frozen over. Nevertheless I get warm on the way up and take off some clothes. After less than an hour I arrive at the summit. Surprise, I’m not alone: I see the first person since 6 days!
Which madman besides me could have the idea to climb the summit this early? Well, he’s a German professional photographer, who has lots of equipment including a gigantic 400mm F2.8 telephoto lens. I’m baffled!
We get into conversation and he tells me that he came from the parking lot at the Sitoälven bridge (a day’s march from Aktse). He hopes to observe and photograph moose in the delta from up here.
Slowly the clouds redden in the west. I take some first images. Although I’m up here for the third time, the view impresses me every time anew.
I wait until the sunlight finally illuminates the entire delta. Especially in the morning light it looks really unique, and I take a lot of detail photos.
After quite a while I descend from the summit. After all, I haven’t had any breakfast yet. I’m really happy how the morning turned out. Lucky me!
When I’m done with breakfast, I get ready for departure.
Along the path towards Aktse I meet the photographer with his girlfriend and two other Germans who haven’t been on the summit this morning. My new acquaintances want to spend another night at Skierffe and then head back to Aktse. In the sun it’s now pleasantly warm.
The further descent towards Aktse follows a well-worn trail with a few muddy passages in between. But that doesn’t bother me much. Thanks to the sunshine I can walk short-sleeved :-). The trail offers beautiful views towards the Laitaure delta.
At some point I reach Kungsleden – the King’s Trail. At this time of the year there’s only little hiker traffic. In fact, I don’t meet anybody before getting to the Aktse hut. Upon my arrival I first check the weather forecast for the next days. Unfortunately, tomorrow promises continuous rain.
I enjoy the afternoon and evening in this location. They even have a brand new sauna!
I’m walking around and down to the lakeshore. Here, a boat transport to the other side of the lake is provided. It’s also possible to use rowing boats. The water is calm and makes for good reflections.
In the evening I enjoy the sauna and finally get really clean :-). In the hut I meet a few other hikers that are hiking Kungsleden and have some issues with boat transport across Sitojaure (which I won’t have to cross as I’ll go on south to Kvikkjokk).
Day 12: Staying put at Aktse
The next morning it’s raining cats and dogs, and no improvement is expected throughout the day. Thus, I extend my stay in the hut. A little luxury is sometimes nice :-). I still have 3 days left, because I planned generously, taking into account potential difficulties / unusually bad weather, etc.
At noon the photographer couple and the other two Germans return from Skierffe. While the photographers want to walk to their car in the rain (quite a distance), the others stay overnight.