Lake Vänern is awaiting us

Lake Vänern is a huge, unique lake resembling the ocean with its sea like character with bare cliffs and islets and a free horizon without land in sight. With its 22 000 islands, islets and skerries it is the largest sweet water archipelago in northern Europe.

There are shallow inlets and bays rich in fish, sandy beaches, islands and shores with interesting flora and fauna.

No wonder a lot of birds thrive here. More than 30 000 gulls and terns are found here. The most common bird of preys are marsh harriers, ospreys and hobbies but in the areas we paddle the white tailed eagle is common. Imagine sitting in the kayak with the eagle above you in the sky or sitting by the camp fire in the evening watching and listening to the magic sounds of the loons.

A whole summer awaits us on lake Vänern. From the middle of June to the end of August we are ready to Search Explore and Discover! Are you ready to join us? Our Kayaking Base Camp is situated at Duse Udde camping Säffle and we also operate from Krokstad Mansion Säffle.


What about winter paddling?

After miles and miles of skating we were longing to get out in the kayak on open waters. It was both winter and spring in the air. The bare rocks were covered with a thin layer of snow, nice slush on the shore but we got our reward of spring – special meetings with different migrant birds and the joy of paddling in a calm archipelago apart from calling sounds of eiders and plovers.

There was almost no wind, -5 degrees C and clear sky. Could it be better? Our goal was the seal colony about 4 km south. After paddling a couple of kilometers over oyster and mussels banks we spotted a welcomed guest – our first Oyster Catcher! Yipppeee – spring is arriving.

Slowly, slowly and silently we approached the seal colony. From a distance we saw them lying on the islets but sadly they were too shy for us. All of them dived down and curiously they observed us from the water. BUT – to our delight we came really close to about 15 purple sandpipers. Some purple sandpipers stay in our region over winter but most of them migrate to southern Europe before they come back. Were these migratory birds or had they stayed here all winter?

The sandpipers flew south – we turned back to our starting point in tail wind. So fantastic.

Only a 7 km trip but it gave us so much inspiration, energy and hope for new experiences and adventures and a feeling of the wonderful spring season which is already here.
As we say – the big adventure is sometimes just by the corner. It doesn´t have to take too much planning and effort to experience if you have the right equipment and be open to use all your senses to take in what nature offers you.

Would you like to join us? Please send us a mail to and we will plan your dream experience in unspoilt nature!

Starting point Heestrand Bohuslän and Medevi Brunn Östergötland


Among castles and mansions on Lake Båven

Nordic Skating offers you exclusive experiences, from desolate lakes in deep forests to populated areas in cultural landscapes with buildings reminding us of days gone by. Our last great trip took place on Lake Båven, situated in county Södemanland, south west of Stockholm The lake is formed like an octopus, with a lot of islands, which makes it very interesting to skate around. We were skating on magic black ice and made our tour between castles and mansions from 1600’s. It’s a very special feeling to admire the beauty of all these buildings from the “water front”.

We couldn’t resist a short early morning trip on lake Mälaren to see Gripsholm Castle in the crispy and fresh sunny morning. The castle is known as our first king Gustav Wasa’s castle. He founded the castle in 1537. The colourful ice yachts were a special contrast to the solid castle. Close to the castle another beautiful building showed its inviting frontage.

Sometimes pictures tell more than words……

You never cease to marvel at the beauty of the ice.

And if you get tired of looking down on the ice , you can always look up at the sky and find new phenomenas.

Being out in nature is always something new. You can never imagine what you will experience!

Lake Sommen – a silent paradise

Sommen – a lake in the borderland of Östergötland and Småland – with an area of 132 square kilometers and as many islands as the number of days of the year. Formed as a shape of an octopus. The tale tells that the lake is created by the hoof of the prehistoric cow. With miles and miles of untouched shorelines. To skate in the numerous bays, over ice of clear waters and under steeps is an adventure. In summer lake Sommen is an eldorado for all kinds of outdoor life but now in winter you can experience the total tranquility.

Our pictures show that the day was fantastic. Blue sky, almost no wind and perfect ice!

Skating in this area takes you back to prehistoric times and you feel the giant forces from the inland ice.

Today’s skating was only a little, little part of the lake. There is so much more to explore!

We are always ready to search, explore and discover together with you!

Rain, thaw and low temperature – medicine for good ice

County Östergötland offered us wonderful skating conditions. Two days’ skating on Lake Stråken and Lake Regnaren in wild and silent nature. No cars, no noise – just we and nature.
Our first tour around Lake Stråken was mysterious. The fog enveloped us like a soft, warm blanket.

Two days later we found a new favourite lake – Lake Regnaren. Hidden in the forest lies this gem with many islands, bays and sounds. A culture lanscape in a mining area since the 1700’s. We started our trip around the lake near Regnaholm Manor – a storied mansion and even a botanical interesting place. The original family tree to a Swedish famous apple variety “Gyllenkrok Astrakan” grows here.

We had a quiet and restful skating marvelling the richness of nature. For a while we were accompanied by two Sea eagles. Now all small lakes are frozen. Where do they find food? Do they fly to the Baltic Sea for which is not far away for fishing or do they find other food as hares, minks and carcasses?

After 5 hours on ice we headed back home looking forward to tomorrow’s adventure – Lake Sommen in the southern part of Östergötland.

Three days skating in Norway

“We really loved and enjoyed the skating in the fairytale scenery and the perfect ice conditions.” These are words from two Dutch skaters and nature lovers. The dates were set and most of  the lakes in Sweden were covered with snow. BUT lake Vansjöen in Norway offered solid ice and good skating conditions. Unfortunately our first day, Wednesday 11th January, was stormy and the rain poured down. Nothing stopped us – we made us ready to force the weather.

After a short skating we went into our car to check more ice inland. Unfortunately it was snowing, so the desicion to go back to lake Vansjöen next day was right. We were a bit worried that there should be “overice” but the surface was hard, solid and dry. It couldn´t be better!

Off we went following the west shore of the island Dillingöia. Almost at the southern point we were stopped by thinner ice. We had forced the headwind and the tailwind on our way back was pure pleasure.

After a nice break we were ready to skate back to our starting point.

As we said the first days – it can only be better. And it did! Some degrees below zero, almost no wind and blue sky. We went back to the same starting point as the day before hoping for even thicker ice after a cold night. We were right. Where we couldn´t skate yesterday it was possible this day. But as always – we had to watch out. After so heavy rains the water has to flow out in the sea and there are many exposed places where to pay attention. Especially points and sounds.

After a good time of skating we stopped for a break, had a nice fire and were waiting for the dark. It was full moon night. We waited and waited for the moonrise but the forest and the hills concealed the moon. We had a nice skating with our headlamps and arrived back to our car in dark. After less than 1 km we met the yellow, full shining moon. A good end of three wonderful days out on ice!

Around Lake Mökeren Norway

Is there a better way than starting the new year on perfect ice? New years day 2017 blessed us with 46 km fantastic skating around lake Mökeren, just by the border to Sweden.

We captured the moment to be out on the ice just before sunrise. To our luck we heard the wonderful sounds of black grouse on the other side of the lake. Droppngs on the ice showed that they had been here before.

Nordic skating isn’t just the joy of skating. It gives you such wonderful nature experiences. We met a squirrel, followed some ravens and passed by a beaver hut. You could see the activity of chopped birches and the open water outside the hut. The beavers are really social animals. Inside the hut the family has different rooms where they spend their days and nights during winter time. The entrance to the hut is below the water surface to keep predators away.

After some nice refreshing pauses we were happy to skate round the lake on perfect ice and were back to the car just at sunset.

The winter solstice 2016 was December 21st. Now the days are getting longer and longer. We are looking forward to many skating tours 2017!

Magic ice after thaw

Ice is an everchanging element. After many days of temperatures over zero daytime, some rain and some degrees below zero the last nights this magic surface gave us an excellent experience. As the thickness of the ice had reduced remarkably we really had to be careful and we didn’t reach as long as we wished. Some weeks ago we had skated almost all around lake Kornsjön.

…. and more frozen leaves

On this type of ice you need to be careful. When there has been water on the ice it has to disappear somewhere. Small holes appear, the water whirls and the hole grows bigger.

Though we didn’t skate far distance this day’s trip gave us a lot of sunshine, skating on parts of three lakes and new ice experiences.

Skating in Dalarna part 2

After a relaxing sauna and a good nights sleep at Hotel Bügelhof at Sälenfjällen we were ready for our third day. It was very windy and 9 degrees below zero. Our destination was Lake Tandsjön – a narrow, long lake up in the fjells. The lake is especially interesting for its esker which extends along the middle of the lake. The sun was shining, the fjells showed their snowy tops in the morning sun and we were eager to skate in this wonderful environment. On icy roads we were approching the awaited lake. To our disappointment the lake was covered with snow. So – off we continued towards lake Tisjön, only 20 km south west. And look! This scenario opened up! About 60 km smooth ice around the lake to explore.

We skated along the shore, in to marshlands and enjoyed the art gallery of nature.

Counterclockwise we got most out of our trip. Almost no wind at the west side of the lake and with the sun high above us we were looking forward to have the setting sun on the east side of the lake on our way back.

The days are short in December. The rays of the low sun gave us a magic light on our way  back to the starting point. There are a lot of eskers in this area and along the lake. By the shore line there were a lot of round “holes” in the ice that were frozen later than the surrounding ice. Is it under water wells from the esker or is it some gas?

The landscape showed the beautifulness of high sandbanks built up from ice rivers during the ice age more than 10 000 years ago.

This day’s trip gave us good exercise and wonderful treat of nature. It showed us remnants from the ice age and gave us insight in places and buildings by the lake for animal husbandry from the 1950’s. Every trip we do make us curious to find new places to explore and to learn about nature and culture with help of the wonderful sport Nordic Skating!



Skating in Dalarna – part 1

It´s something extra in the beginning of the skating season when lakes start to freeze so you can choose and plan your trip between different places. We had followed the weather reports and knew there were snow in the north of Dalarna followed by a thaw period and there after temperatures below zero. Had the snow melted? Was there a good surface to skate on? The answer was YES!

We started our trip in the morning at lake Horrmunden – an ideal lake big enough for skating a whole day.

It´s always exiting  tofollow the shores of the lake and investigate nature. The nature is quite silent, only some birds show up. We had a Siberian jay near us and some ravens were circling above us. Otherwise the only sounds were from our skates touching the ice.

After 58 kilometres on stable ice we were happy to have a good meal and a good night´s rest at Knappgården north of Särna and make plans for the next day.

Heading south agaig exploring new water sytems. Many lakes are water reservoirs, which means that the water level is higher than it was from the beginning. Skating between stumps and tufts in labyrints is really fun! After 15 kilometers on good ice and with fjells in the distance, we moved on by car to another new lake for us.

We had waited a couple of years to explore lake Ransi. Today the dream was fulfilled. That lake is a real gem. In total wilderness, only with a couple of cottages, we were one with ice and nature. With the top of Mount Städjan in the distance, lightened up by the afternoon sun, we started our tour round the lake. The light was wonderful, almost no wind and good ice. The top experience was skating upstream river Björnån (Bear River) for kilometers. After the total trip round the lake of about 17 kilometers we were happily back at our car and headed south for new adventures day three.