Skamtinden Hiking Trail
The Queen of Ersfjorden
- Destination: Tromsø
- Season: May-October
- Difficulty: Demanding
- Distance: 3.6 kilometers (out‑and‑back)
- Elevation Gain: 890 meters
- Duration: 2-5 hours
Skamtinden, the Queen of Ersfjorden, is one of the classic hikes on Kvaløya, at 884 meters above sea level. A hike to the peak of Skamtinden, will provide one of Kvaløya’s most spectacular views, looking out over Ersfjorden and Senja, as well as the surrounding sea and islands.
There is next to no approach to the hike, but the hike is steep. However, there are no aerial challenges and the hike is non-technical. This makes the effort/view ratio great, and you will have views over the surrounding sea and peaks throughout most of the hike.
Skamtinden is the start of “Erfjordtraversen”, which goes along the ridge from Skamtinden, through all the peaks on the north side of Ersfjorden, and ends at Store Blåmann.
Head out of Tromsø, towards Kvaløya, and follow the road towards Ersfjordbotn. Here you take a right towards Grøtfjorden. Keep straight from Grøtfjorden towards Tromvik.
When you get to Tromvik take a left towards Rekvika. From here there is a gravel road which is not in a great condition, follow it over the pass and down towards Rekvika. The parking is on your left.
The drive from Tromsø is about 55 kilometres, leading through some spectacular nature.
The trail starts next to the parking lot, leading through a modest birch forest. Skamtinden is the mountain to your left at the parking lot, when looking towards the ocean. The trail leads straight up the mountain, so it is hard to get lost.
At about 200 meters above sea level, you are above the tree lines, and you will have great views of Sessøya, Håja and the peaks of Tromvika and Rekvika. The trail continues on the ridge, leading straight up the mountain.
At about 400 meters the trail continues up a scree, and is from here on marked with small cairns. Keep left to make the hike more pleasant, with bigger and firmer rocks.
The last part of the hike to the peak is on the north side of the ridge. It requires some easy scrambling towards the end. You can look at wear and tear of the terrain to find the way.
The last part requires the use of your hands, so be careful when wet or snowy. Some people, afraid of heights, stop 10 meters before the peak, as the last meters are quite exposed.
At the top of the peak you can enjoy the views of Ersfjorden, overlooking mountains such as Middagstinden, Skittentinden, Hollendaren and Storstolpan. You also have great views towards Senja, where Breidtinden is the highest peak on the Island.
- There are no stores, restroom or cafes close by, so bring or buy what you need either in Tromsø or on your way passing through Kvaløya.
- There is no water along the hike, so bring your own
- Would recommend to stop by Eide Handel, which has great local quality food to grab on the go.
- Parking is free, but only fits around 8-10 cars
- There is a beach close to the parking spot, so it is possible to cool down after a hot and sweaty hike
Where to stay
There are a variety of hotels and Airbnbs in Tromsø and Kvaløya, as well as campgrounds and cabins. There are opportunities to camp on the way to Skamtinden, for example close to Grøtfjorden. Remember to leave no trace.
Questions or comments? Let us know.
By Miriam Aanensen
Outdoor enthusiast and adventure seeker based in Norway and Canada. Instagram: @miriammalen