© Sigrid Haarberg

The Seven Sisters are the challenging beauties of Helgeland

Beautiful women deserve all the attention they get. In the midst of the magical coast of Helgeland, seven lofty lovelies await our admiration. Only you can decide whether you will view them at a safe distance, or venture closer to experience them in their full glory.

The Seven Sisters form a majestic chain of peaks overlooking the shipping channel plied by the Hurtigruten. Thrusting their heads 1,000 metres above the shoreline, they form a dramatic backdrop to the myriad of islands and lush cultural landscape. Their beauty may be admired equally well from the deck of the Hurtigruten as from a bike out on one of the islands. As with all natural beauties, close contact brings the greatest pleasures .

Facts about the Seven Sisters of Helgeland

The Seven Sisters can be found on the island of Alsten close to the community of Sandnessjøen, in Alstahaug commune. You can drive, fly or take the Hurtigruten.

Botnkrona (1072 moh.), Grytfoten (1019 moh.), Skjerdingen (1037 moh.), Tvillingan (945 og 980 moh.), Kvasstinden (1010 moh.) and Stortinden/Breidtinden (910 moh.).

The quickest time to walk across all seven tops is 3 hours and 43 minutes!

This is depending on the individuals abilities, however Skjerdingen, Tvillingene and Breidtinden are the tops that most choose to hike.

All the peaks have names

From north to south the Sisters are Botnkrona at 1,072 metres (3,517 ft), Grytfoten at 1,019 metres (3,343 ft), Skjæringen at 1,037 metres (3,402 ft), Tvillingene (The Twins) at 945 and 980 metres (3,100 ft and 32,15 ft), Kvasstinden at 1,010 metres (3,313 ft) and Breitinden at 910 metres (2,985 ft).

The Geography gives an insight into the areas past

The Sisters’ origins are to be found in the Ice Age; created by glaciers digging down into softer rocks, leaving the harder rocks behind, naked and scoured by the ice. The landscape around the Sisters some 20,000 years ago was a jumble of glacier tongues stretching in different directions, from which the peaks emerged as bare “nunataks”.

Folk tales tell of the Sisters creation

According to popular belief, the Seven Sisters did, however, play a role in the legend of Nordland, the tale of how the mountains of Nordland came into being. The fiery horseman Hestmannen was pursuing the maid Lekamøya and the Seven Sisters. While Hestmannen was after Lekamøya, there is more than a suggestion that several of the sisters had taken a fancy to Hestmannen, the Adonis of the Lofoten Islands. The soap-like drama had a terrible ending, however, when the sun rose and all were turned into stone.

From the tops, you can see much of Nordland

Botnkrona, the highest of the Seven Sisters, offers the broadest panorama, with the Vega Archipelago, Mount Torghatten and the far-north hills of Trøndelag visible to the south. Out over the sea in the west are spread the myriad islands, islets and skerries of the Helgeland coast up to the three mountain peaks at Træna. The 1,916 metre-high (6,286 ft) Oksskolten, the highest peak in Northern Norway, lies to the east. To the north is the great Svartisen Glacier, and on a clear day you can see the Lofoten mountains.

Follow the trails to reach the peaks

The Seven Sisters are not particularly difficult to climb for people of average fitness and mobility. If you have little experience of mountain hiking, it may however be wise to avoid the airy part of the climb on Kvasstinden. Well-marked trails lead from Botn at Sandnessjøen up and down all seven peaks to Søvika, south of the airport in Sandnessjøen. There are also a number of marked parking spaces. The tourist information office in Sandnessjøen sells walking maps drawn up by Sandnessjøen og Omegn Turistforening (Sandnessjøen and Surrounds Tourism Association).

Only the experienced can handle the all Seven peaks

Walking the entire range, ascending and descending all the peaks, is a challenge for all reasonably fit and reasonably experienced mountain hikers. Most will manage the entire trip in 10 to 15 hours. A detailed route description is available from the tourist information office, which awards a certificate to everyone who completes the hike of all seven peaks.

Read more about the Seven Sisters

Visit Helgeland tells you how to climb the sisters, and where to see them from a distance.