Norway Gear and Advice
Due to coastal currents the weather in northern Norway is surprisingly warm given its latitude. It is similar to spring in New Zealand or the Alps in that you can expect anything, there are small trees so you can often ski in weather that would be impossible in NZ. You do not need to be prepared for super cold -30 type weather.
Shell jacket: water & windproof
Shell pants/overpants: water & windproof
Base layer thermal underwear– polypro or merino e.g. icebreaker (no cotton): 2x top 1x bottom
Mid layer: fleece top
Mid layer: Insulating jacket e.g. primaloft, synthetic down or fleece
2 pairs thermal socks
Sunhat & scarf or buff for sun protection
Warm hat / balaclava
Strong sunglasses or glacier glasses
Lightweight thin polypro gloves
Warm windproof gloves
Ski touring boots/skis/bindings
Light weight crampons for your boots
Light ice axe
Avalanche transceiver . Needs to be 3 antenna transceiver. Ask me if you have a question.
Avalanche shovel & probe
Day pack with ice axe and ski attachments
Personal medication (compeed, aspirin, blisters) Guide will have full first aid kit
Small container of sun block & lip screen – maximum protection
Toothbrush & toothpaste
Handsanitiser (waterless, small bottle)
You will not need a lot of clothing aside from your ski gear. There is very little time spent in cities and since we are in small villages with no restaurants or bars you don’t need a lot of non-ski wear. Unless you are doing other travel before or after Norway, you will not need much. For the Norway trip a back pack and a ski bag stuffed with clothing is actually plenty of space. We will be moving around quite a bit and you will appreciate not dragging large suitcases around. All accommodation has washing machines and dryers so it is easy to clean your clothes.
Go light. We will be covering a lot of ground and the most energy saving thing you can do is to get a light ski, boot, binding set up. I am 6 feet tall and my skis (K2 Wayback 88) are 174cm long, 88cm underfoot and weigh 6lbs or 2.6 kg. A pair of Dynfit TLT bindings weigh 346grams and a pair of size 27.5 Dynafit TLT boots are just under 3 lbs or 1.3kg. All up this setup weighs a little over 4.2kg. There are lighter setups but the above type skis boots and bindings (there are many other similar brands and models) will not set you back in terms of stability or comfort.
Contrast this with Volkl Nunataq Ski, Marker Baron bindings and Lange XT boots coming in at 22.75lb or 10.3kg. Add in larger skins for the skis and that is about an extra 3kg on each foot that you have to swing each step of the day.
You can not afford to be in remote locations and have your ski bindings break, this can possibly end your trip or even put you and your group in a dangerous situation. The less moving parts, the less likely something will break. “Frame bindings” where the toe and heel are on an adjustable platform which can be released at the heal are heavy and prone to breaking. In my experience I have seen frame bindings break to the point where I severely discourage people from using them. Dynafit or “Tech” type bindings are lighter, often cheaper and very seldom suffer malfunctions. Of course you do need a compatible boot for these bindings. The best advice I can give you is get a “Tech” boot/binding system.
Good goggles are quite often overlooked. While an old crappy pair will often get you through a couple hours of snowstorm at the ski area, on long tours google performance can make the difference between clearly seeing the cliff you are traversing above and not being able to see it at all. Nearly all googles have double lenses. If the googles are old or have been crushed into a bag unprotected there will be an unnoticeable crack between the lenses. When moisture gets between the lenses through melting snow or perspiration the lenses will fog up and you will not be able to see. HAVE GOOGLES THAT ARE IN PERFECT CONDITION AND HAVE THEM IN A NON CRUSHABLE CASE.
While it is relatively unlikely that we will need ice axe and crampons it is a good idea to have them along. It is better to have this gear and not need it than to not have it and wish we did. There are very light weight ice axe,crampon and harness setups designed for this sort of travel. Often it is difficult to justify purchasing specialized gear such as this when you might own or be able to borrow standard (but heavier) climbing equipment. If buying this sort of specialized ski touring equipment is a bridge too far then by all means use the gear you have. However, I would point out that if you are doing a trip like this you are probably a keen back country skier and will doubtless be going again. You will still be smiling as you pack your aluminum crampons long after you have forgotten how much they cost.
All transceivers now need to be 3 antenna models. Unfortunately other models are now out dated regardless of their age or amount of use.