The King’s Trail

Sweden’s ‘King’s Trail’ or ‘Kungsleden’ is one of Europe’s wildest and most remote treks. It provides an unforgettable snowshoe expedition 200 kilometres inside of the Arctic Circle.

9 days
height 1140M
grade grade grade grade grade grade
price 2195
Apr
2019

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Gateway                     Abisko

Distance                      90km

Daily distance             15km

Nights in huts              6

Ski/ snowshoe days    6

Backpack Weight         12-15kg

Temperature                -1 to – 25°C

Challenge                     3

Loved every minute, even when the weather turned and we were given a taste of the savage Artic winter. The landscape is truly stunning, with the Kebnekaise mountains becoming ever more impressive as you travel further south, and the huts are fantastic – can’t beat a wood burning stove and a sauna at the end of a long day on the trail!” – Jay

Expedition Details

 

The pulk is real and temperatures low on this expedition. Even though there is the promise of warm huts and even warmer saunas at the end of each day, this is not an easy feat by any means. Most people think that the mountains gets higher as you get closer towards the Kebnekaise, the last stage of the expedition, but this is not the case. One reason why we like this expedition so much is that you are surrounded by high peaks the whole time. No view is the same as huge lakes, wide sweeps of Arctic tundra and mountain ranges unfold with every bit of distance covered. This is different to the high plateaus of Scandinavia, like the Hardangervidda or Finnmarksvidda, which are characterised by more open landscapes and wide horizons. This also means that the height profile on this trip is quite undulating and often there is a hill at the start or end of the day which poses an extra challenge. No surprise then, when you are surrounded by the valley sides, clusters of glaciers and endless summits, that the Kingstrail is referred to as Europe’s wildest and most remote treks. 200 kilometers inside the Arctic Circle means that you have to be prepared for extremely cold temperatures and the challenges that come with the cold. We are always committed to teaching new skills, so the cold and equipment that is needed to complete the expedition should not be daunting, but a welcome opportunity to learn and master new skills.

We offer the option to complete this expedition on either skis or snowshoes. We cover around 15km per day and the longest day will be around 24km. Remote STF mountain huts provide comfortable accommodation and food supplies along the way, and some have wood-fired saunas – the perfect place to relax after a long day. The Kebnekaise Mountain Station, beneath the highest peak in Sweden, is our final destination. We return to Nikkaluokta by snowmobile.

This is a real winter adventure, covering mile after mile in snowy wilderness and keeping an eye out for the Northern Lights, which may blaze across the night sky.

 

Fitness requirements and experience:

As one of our harder challenges the Kingstrail demands a reasonable degree of fitness and is suitable for fit hill walkers. If you are used to regular multi day hill-walking in the UK you will have the right level of fitness to fully enjoy your time on this trek. Winter walking experience is desirable but not essential. Experience on snowshoes is not needed as full training will be included as part of the trip.

More Info

If you would like more information on this expedition you can download the full PDF trip details or drop us a line with your questions!









Training and Preparation:

Many wonder how to prepare best for an expedition. This will vary from trip to trip and for each individual. We provide a lot of advice and support before the start of the expedition to make sure that all team members are as best prepared as possible and we have a functioning team.

Training Weekend:

There are many ways in which you can train and prepare by yourself – but the best way is to come to our expedition training course which we organise as part of the trip. The dates are flexible, arranged to suit you, but the course generally runs 1-2 months before your expedition to allow you to get more training in and put the things learned into practice. The aim is to go through all the skills and equipment needed beforehand to be as well prepared as we can. It’s also a good opportunity to get to know your team mates, as operating closely as a team will be important on your expedition. We aim to perfect camp routines, navigation and teamwork as we, at the same time, enjoy the scenery and the peace of the North of Scotland. Where our training courses are based depends on the kind of skills we aim to teach: the Lake District, North Wales and Scotland are our usual locations. For this expedition, we will head to the Cairngorm plateau which is the perfect training ground for polar travel. The training course is free of charge, but you will be required to cover your transport, food and accommodation. More information on the training course will be given once you’re signed onto the trip.

Fitness Training:

Our usual support includes talking through any questions on the phone, and we will be in regular contact with you in the build-up to the expedition to supply you with information, updates and reassurance where needed. If this training expedition is part of your preparation towards a tougher crossing of Iceland, the Patagonian Icecap or Greenland, we recommend having a look at our Training Consultation. The Training Consultation day gives you the option to assess in detail where you are at in terms of mental and physical capacity and skill, from where we can move on to putting together a personal training plan. For a higher level of support, we also offer a Polar mentoring programme.

Equipment:

Equipment is one of the areas we get the most questions on. Being well kitted out for a trip into extreme conditions is essential. Once you are signed up to a trip we will send you a kit list which explains thoroughly what you need. Why and how you use the equipment will be discussed on the training course. Our pre-expedition training course is designed to help you get familiar with the essential kit. For our trips we supply most of the specialist equipment that is not easy for you to get yourself, either as part of the trip package or for rental. For your personal equipment we are able to offer advice on choosing the best kit, most of which we can order in for you at good discount prices. We are affiliated with Cotswold Outdoors, which means that our clients get 15% discount at all Cotswold Stores.

Food:

Hauling a pulk in low temperatures for long days means you burn up to 6,000kcal every day. The food we take is there to keep up your calorie count, but also your morale. We supply freeze-dried Mountain House ration packs as well as lunch packs. For breakfast and dinner there will be a variety of meals to choose from. Prior to the expedition you will be asked to send us a list with your preferred options. Please let us know if you have special needs or concerns regarding food or nutrition, we will do our best to help.

Safety:

Guide-Client ratio is maximum 1:3, which allows for close personal support for each expedition team member. Our teams carry a satellite phone and a Personal Locator Beacon which sends out a signal via satellite to identify the approximate position of the party.

 

ADD A REVIEW

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You will get to know your guides in person on the training course. Mark is the main guide on most expeditions, but he has teamed up with a handful of other guides who form part of the Exped team. All of our guides are capable and dedicated. They have the right attitude – both towards reaching the goal and towards their expedition teams. We strive for safety and mutual support in our teams, as well as having a bit of banter. All of us love adventure, but most of all we want to pass on our knowledge, share amazing experiences, and inspire others to be ambitious.

MARK WALKER

Mark is the director of Exped Adventure and the head guide on many of our expeditions. Mark is a highly experienced Expedition Leader and Mountaineering Instructor with over 20 years of mountaineering experience. Mark grew up in the English Lake District and has been climbing, running and walking in the mountains all over the world since he was a small child. He knows the Lake District, North Wales, Scotland and the Peak District like the back of his hand.

Mark has led a variety of expeditions to the far corners of the globe. He specialises in technical mountaineering and remote trekking expeditions. Mark grew up in the English Lake District and knows the area inside out.

Mark has put up new routes in the Lake District, Scotland, and Kenya. Climbing in all disciplines remains his passion.

Mark’s Expediton experience is broad and vast, including expeditions to Ethiopia, Malawi, Morocco, Jordan, Egypt, Israel, Peru, Kenya, Tanzania, India, Nepal, Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Norway, Svalbard, Russia, and more.

Marks high altitude climbing experience includes; Kilimanjaro, Mount Kenya, Mount Elgon, Ama Dablam, Aconcagua, Kyajo Ri, Elbrus, Tharpa Chuli, Singu Chuli, Mont Blanc, The Matterhorn, Monte Rosa, and much more!

Mark lives in Windermere in the Lake District with his young family.

Mark is a certified ML, WML, IML and MIA.

MATT STAPLEY

Matt is an experienced outdoor instructor and has been in the industry for 12 years. He has worked with clients all over the UK, Peru, and Europe and has mountaineering experience in America, North Africa and Western and Eastern Europe. Matt’s personal interests include multi-day mountain marathons, ultra marathons and triathlons.

Matt is a certified ML, WML and MIA.

RICH MAYWHORT

Rich has 30 years experience of climbing and mountaineering, with 15 of those years as a professional Mountaineer and Climbing instructor. He has climbed and led clients extensively over the breadth of the UK and in the Alps.

With climbing and mountaineering experience over Italy, Switzerland, France, Austria, Canada, Slovenia, Greece, random islands and North Africa.

GARY FLETCHER

Gary has been working as Group Captain and Training Expedition Leader in the Royal Air Force for 25 years before taking on his current freelance work as Outdoor Instructor. He has led numerous White Water Kayaking expeditions to the French Alps and New Zealand, as well as Sea Kayaking expeditions in Scotland. He has been on expeditions to the High Atlas Mountains and Nepal, including Gokyo Ri (5357m).

 

TRACEY WRIGHT

Tracey is a highly experienced International Mountain Leader and also holds the Mountain Instructor Certificate. She has Alpine experience on touring and cross country skis, including summits of Weismeis, Pigne d’Arolla, Grand Paradiso and Mt Leone. She has lead mountaineering expeditions to Mt Kenya, including ascent of Diamond Couloir, Kilimanjaro, Bolivian 6000m peaks and Mont Blanc. She has extensive personal snow and ice mountaineering experience in New Zealand, the Alps and Scotland.
Currently, she is working as a maths teacher at an International school of Aiglon College, Chesieres, Switzerland where she assists with the Outdoor Ed programme throughout the year.

Outdoor national qualifications British Assoc of Snowsport Instructors Alpine Level 2, Cross Country Ski Leader; Mountain Instructors Certificate (winter climbing instructor); International Mountain Leader.

 

Start DateEnd DateDaysPriceAvailability
6th Apr 201914th Apr 20199£2195

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What is included:
• Accommodation – 3 night hotels, 5 nights huts.
• Meals – 8 breakfasts, 7 lunches and 8 evening meals.
• Day pass into the Ice Hotel.
• All road transfers in-country (except airport transfers).
• Expedition Team Leader.
• Training Course.

What is not included:
• Travel to and from UK airport.
• International flights and taxes.
• STF Membership Fee.
• Personal equipment (snowshoes and walking poles etc…).
• Travel insurance.
• Drinks and personal spending.
• Airport transfers to and from the in-country airport

Booking – What happens next:

• The deposit reserves you a place on the trip. It is non-refundable according to our Booking Conditions. You will receive a confirmation of booking and further details about the trip.
• We will also supply you with more information on the training weekend and a complete equipment list.
• If you require a payment plan, get in touch with us as soon as possible so we can discuss the options.
• We will need you to fill in a Client Booking form for our records, regarding any health issues, your experience, insurance and next of kin details.
• The remaining balance will be due 8 weeks prior to departure (unless you arranged a payment plan). Any cancellations at this point are subject to our Booking Conditions.

 

Bespoke option:

We can organise this expedition on a ‘tailor-made’ private basis for groups of friends, families, clubs, charities or any other group. Please contact us to discuss the itinerary and your preferred dates. We will then send you a quote, with no obligation.

 

Insurance:

You will need a travel insurance policy that caters for the activities you will undertake on your trip with Exped Adventure. It is a requirement of our booking conditions that you have such a policy. For advice on best policies get in touch.

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