Day 3: Alesjaure to Tjäktja to Sälka 25km – The King’s Trail (Kungsleden) – August 2018

It’s light here about 02:30 am with only a few hours of darkness. It was a wild, windy and rainfall night once again. The winds were even stronger than last night although I was more exposed to the elements here. I was situated on a ridge just south of the Alesjaure huts so the winds really tried to blow my shelter away. The Duplex vibrated in the wind most of the night. I could feel the walls being pushed like a sail into my feet all night. But when I inspected my shelter the next morning she stood exactly how I pitched her the night before and hadn’t moved an inch.

The air seems to be dry up here too; even though I had to sleep with the doors closed every night there was never any condensation on the inside walls a single night.

I made my way southwards following the valley of Alisvággi. Just before I crossed the bridge at Bossusjohka it started raining and I had to stop and don rain gear.

It was still very wet and windy but the fantastic views made up for it. Some time after the bridge at Bossusjohka I stopped for a break (below).

Up ahead now I can see Tjäktja hut in the distance (below) under the high cliff Muorahiscohkka (1413m). Wow 😮 what a view and what a location for a sleep. Very hard to keep my eyes on the trail.

I was going to stop for some lunch here but the hut was a little off the trail and over a bridge so I kept walking. The next section leads me up to the highest point of Kungsleden, the Tjäktja pass (1150m) which is the same elevation of the pass I went over on day two.

They should call this “The King’s Rock Trail”. This section from the Tjäktja hut up to the Tjäktja pass is very rocky indeed and very long, about 4 km. There is a steep climb up to the little hut at the highest point of the pass (below). This is where I had lunch sitting on the north side of the hut looking back at where I came from. You could see a long way.

After lunch at the hut on the top of the pass I continued on to Sälka. I only managed to walk a couple of hundred meters on the other side of the hut and started my descent when I couldn’t believe my eyes. The sight was so stunning it took my breath away.

On the south side of the pass it was fairly steep and I had to watch my step so as not to fall. My trekking poles were very handy here. Down in the valley the views were just as magnificent. I looked up and around in awe and couldn’t really grasp the size and beauty of this mountain nature before me.

The rest of the afternoon there were stream crossings, reindeer sightings and the high alpine scenery from the valley just stopped me in my tracks continually.

Not too far from Sälka I had to cross a very sad bridge. I can report that it held my weight and is still standing. But I think that it is in need of some repairs.

It was about 16:30 pm when I made it to my destination Sälka for the day. The huts are located on this little rise that you can see below. I stopped a little before the huts and found a nice location on my own not far from a stream. There were reindeer all around feeding. It was like a fairy tale story that just didn’t end for me. I just couldn’t get enough of this nature.

I found a fine location for my Duplex not far from the Sälka mountain huts for the night. There were still strong winds gusts so I positioned my shelter so as I had some protection on one side again where I could prepare and eat dinner without getting blown away.

After my camp chores were done and I had prepared my food ready for re-hydration, I decided to walk to the hut where I could buy a beer. There is a small but well stocked cabin shop here. The hut is not that big, unlike Alesjaure, but there was a table and a couple of chairs to sit on. It was nice to get out of the wind for a little while and I had some time to waste while my meal was soaking anyway. While I sat and enjoyed my well earned refreshment and studying my map, a guy asked me where I was heading. We got talking and I asked him where he was from. I’m Russian he said. I looked at him, then he just stared at me and said in a deep non emotional voice “it’s okay, I’m civilized”. I laughed and then he got into some conversation with the hut manager.

On my way back to my tent there were more reindeer grazing.

The pain that had developed just below my right knee was not going away so I decided that I would not be climbing Kebnekaise on Tuesday. I was really looking forward to this and it was one of the highlights but I wasn’t going to take any chances either. The mountain will always be there. This meant that I had some extra time on my hands now. I thought that I would change my plans and just walk to Singi in the morning instead of Kebnekaise mountain hut. I went to bed very content with the day’s events and with the scenic views still fresh in my mind. I think that I’ll have a late start in the morning.


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