Iceland Ski Tour
Iceland is a world-class destination for ski touring, backcountry skiing and ski mountaineering. The center of activity is the Troll Peninsula in northern Iceland with vertical descents of up to 1500m or almost 5000ft, thousands of peaks and slopes for all abilities with abundant snow fall make this a paradise for skiers and mountaineers. The season lasts from the end of February until the beginning of June, and with the continual daylight of the Arctic Sun overhead and mild temperatures, snow conditions remain favorable with great corn skiing and the occasional powder dump well into June.
The fact that the Troll Peninsula is surrounded by the Arctic Ocean makes for incredible opportunities of skiing right down to the ocean on stable coastal snowpack but also adds the excitement of Arctic weather and conditions. Iceland is a true adventure skiing destination.
SET DATES WINTER 2017:
Clicking on the ‘Book Now’ button opposite, will open a new tab/window in your browser and direct you to our online tour booking system. Here you can check the course dates and availability
We base ourselves out of a comfortable family run country lodge in Dalvik, in the middle of the best ski terrain that the Troll Peninsula has to offer. The area offers a great variety of mountains and slopes for every level of skier, from those who seek steep couloirs to those who like to let loose on big open slopes. The choice is endless and we could easily spend a lifetime exploring the peaks and valleys of the region. After each day of skiing you will soak your weary but happy feet in one of the regions many geothermal baths.
- Guides expenses and fees
- In resort transport
- Full board chalet accommodation
What's not included
- Transport to/from Akureyri
- Equipment rental
- Travel insurance
Who is this for?
Ski touring in Iceland is a great first ski expedition. You will love this trip if you have done some ski touring before, enjoy off piste skiing (but you don’t need to be a jedi- there is terrain here to suit everyone) and like a bit of comfort and luxury afterwards. Its a great combination of remote physical ski touring, earning your turns, in amazing terrain without the hardships of expedition living.
Accommodation and huts
Our lodge has been opening its doors to groups and individual skiers since March 2015. The lodge was built in 1920s and has since been beautifully renovated along with the old cow-shed which has now become the main ski storage room.
The main house comfortably sleeps 14 in 7 double or twins that have access to three bathrooms and showers along with a comfortable lounge and dinning room. This makes the Karlsa lodge the perfect location to base your ski touring week from.
The lodge is located just 50 minutes from Akureyri airport, 2 minutes away from Dalvik, 10 minutes from Olasfsjordur and strategically located in the middle of the best ski touring terrain on the Troll Peninsula.
Pick up in Akureyri the capital of northern Iceland in the late afternoon followed by a 50 minute transfer to our Lodge for a meet and greet. Welcome dinner is served and we go over the week’s agenda.
Our first day of skiing. The morning is spent on detailed avalanche transceiver and avalanche rescue training, followed by our first peak of many. Our average daily vertical ranges from 1000-2000 meters depending on the group. For those that want more we can go until your legs say stop, for here the night is no excuse as the midnight sun barely touches the ocean before it rises again.
Skiing the peaks above the small fishing village of Dalvik allows us the rare pleasure of sitting in the local geothermal baths and admiring our perfect tracks on the surrounding peaks. Dalvik is the home of some of Iceland’s most accomplished skiers and it is no wonder considering the terrain they grew up in.
Gljúfurárjökull glacier is one of the areas many alpine valley bottom glaciers and one of the best wide open ski slopes to be found on the Troll Peninsula. Situated at the center of the region we will enjoy great views of a large portion of the peninsula. Here you get the real sensation of being in the middle of the arctic with glaciers and snow covered peaks surrounding you wherever you look.
Day 5 – 6
Skiing the “Secret cirques” Our guides are the only ones that know the Troll Peninsula by heart and they will take you to places that have never seen skiers before. Set your tracks down a slope that no one has ever skied. Every week our guides take the opportunity to visit new places giving you a real sense of exploration and achievement.
This is our last ski day, and of course we have saved the best for last. After another great day we say our good byes and head home with the memory of a unique ski touring holiday and already have our plans for future adventures falling into place.
Good fitness will make it more fun and you’ll get more out of your week! Although we will tailor the course
to your ability, we definitely recommend getting as fit as possible before you start. The process of training for your goal will help you focus on your goal – and having a goal will help you focus on your training. Ski mountaineering is all about being able to exercise at a moderate intensity for many hours (typically 5 to 12 hours) and your training should reflect this. Probably the best training is going for a long hill walk or cycle as this simulates the real thing as closely as possible and prepares the mind (exercising for long periods in poor weather requires mental strength!).
However not everyone has the opportunity to do this and so alternatives such as jogging, cycling and gym workouts are just as good. The focus should be on training Cardiovascular Endurance for long days in the mountains. For cardio cycling, running and rowing machines are much better than weight training, which you should try and exercise for up to a couple of
hours at a time, 4 times a week. Also yoga, swimming and Pilates help with core stability and balance, with squats and cycling a good way to strengthen your legs. Remember to build up your workouts over time. If you are not used to exercising much, your muscles and joints need time to build up to avoid injury. Try and choose an activity that you enjoy and keep a note of what you do and your times – this really helps with keeping the motivation up and preparing for the ski tour. If you are not used to training then your local gym will be able to advise you on a plan and schedule to help you achieve your goals. Remember training does not work overnight and the fittest athletes train as part of their lifestyles and have been doing it for years. Consider training for a good couple of months before coming out to Iceland.
If necessary it is possible to rent most hardware items on arrival including a full ski touring set up.
1. Skis with ski touring bindings. Your skis should be a minimum of 90mm underfoot and should be off-piste specific.
2. Ski poles
3. Skins and ski crampons
4. Ski boots and boot crampons – these must fit and be comfortable as we will spend time ascending throughout the week.
5. Ski Helmet
6. Rucksack – 30-40l. with ski straps
7. Avalanche Kit. Transceiver, probe, shovel, harness with 1 screw gate karabiner(can be rented in Chamonix)
8. Sun Protection. Sunglasses, goggles, sunhat, sunscreen, lip salve/block
9. Clothing. 3 sets socks and light coloured thermal tops
10. Clothing cont. Lightweight Gore-Tex top/bottoms, warm hat, thick gloves, thin gloves
11. Insulating layers.
12. Personal first aid – blister kit, ibuprofen.
13. Cash for additional hot drinks / snacks on the mountain
14. Water bottle (minimum 1l)
Remember: Kit should be lightweight but functional – you have to carry it. You can rent most of the above on arrival.
To find out more about our course, availability, or to ask any questions, please get in touch through the website or by phone on +33 (0)845 527 58 12.
We take a 20% deposit to secure your place on one of our courses, and we ask for the balance to be paid 6 weeks before the course start date.
We strongly recommend getting specialist travel insurance that covers cancellation, medical and mountain rescue.
Make sure that it covers glaciated mountaineering and climbing/skiing in Iceland. We recommend the Dogtag (www.dogtag.co.uk) – they have comprehensive policies and a good reputation.
Getting to Akureyri
It is reasonably easy to get to Akureyri Airport with Air Iceland where your transfer will pick you up.
This normally involves one stop from London.
How big will the group be?
Our ski courses will be no more than 6 people per guide. If the group is larger than 6, there will be a second guide and we will have the ability to split the group if necessary.
Is it possible to book individually rather than a group?
Yes. We run our courses with a minimum of 4 people. You can either book individually into a group or you can book as a group and fill the spaces yourself.
What equipment will I need?
Please read the kit list above.
When is the best time?
Good conditions in Iceland are generally from January until late May. In January and February we tend to have more frequent snow falls and from March to May we’re spoilt with excellent spring skiing conditions.
Do I need insurance?
Yes. You will need to take out a comprehensive backcountry skiing package to cover yourself for your trip.
What’s the weather like?
The weather in Iceland is always changeable, but generally we are confident to say that January and February will be snow-filled and cold with temperatures hitting -20 on occasion. Fast forward to March till May and the weather is generally sunnier and we experience warmer temperatures around the 0 and above mark.
How do you match up people on the course?
It is very important for you to let us know your previous experience and ski ability level before booking with us. Then we are able to match you up to suitable groups with similar abilities to make sure you get the most out of your trip.
What will we do if the weather is bad?
Should the weather not play ball for a day, we’ll aim to drive somewhere where the weather is clearer. The days are long in Iceland, and skiing up until midnight is possible from March onwards. This allows us great flexibility and we may head to a thermal natural hot spring if the weather is bad in the morning. Then ski in the evening if it clears up, or the other way round. Either way we have great flexibility to fill our time with outdoor adventurers whatever the weather.
Why choose Adventure Base?
3 reasons to choose Adventure Base for all your mountain adventures.
1. Safety means success – We have been guiding clients in the backcountry for over 8 years with a very high safety rate. To date we have had no major incidents or injuries. This is due to us taking great care in assessing the current snow conditions, and educating our clients on mountain safety.
2. Fun times – We believe in fun times. Skiing in the backcountry can be a serious challenge. But who says it can’t be fun too? Our guides are full of energy, knowledge, fun facts and big smiles. They help create lasting memories.
3. Word of Mouth – Over 70% of new clients have been recommended to us by a friend or colleague. We don’t spend big on marketing campaigns, we stay true to our product, we pay attention to every detail and then let you do the talking.