The Arctic Circle is an imaginary line around the top of the earth 66°34′ north of the equator and only 23.5° from the North Pole! Everywhere within the circle is known as The Arctic.
Within the Arctic Circle we get 24 hour sunlight during summer and 24 hour darkness during winter. The higher up from the Arctic Circle line, the more days of light and darkness is counted. In Finnmark, we enjoy endless summer days with the Midnight Sun and soothing dark winter nights with rivers of Aurora Borealis, also know as the Northern Lights.
The European Route E6 is the main south-north road leading up through Norway to the most northern tip of Europe, Nordkapp. Along the way you can stop off at the Arctic Circle line in Nordland county. Being on top of the old mountain Saltfjellet, the landscape is rocky with no trees, which can feel like you are on another planet. The location has a very touristy Arctic Circle Centre where you can use the amenities, grab a bite to eat, buy a trinket and watch a flick (of Northern Norway, of course).
There is one thing I love about the Arctic Circle line and that is ‘leaving your mark’. As there is not much to work with other than rocks, there is only one thing to do–make a rock pile. Cairns are a standard feature of nature destinations in Norway. It’s a way for locals to mark an accomplishment or an experience trekking to the top of a mountain.
Naturally, over the years all the good rocks have been used by earlier cairn-builders. So what do you do? – borrow from someone else’s pile, of course! As such the landscape is constantly changing with people moving rocks from one pile to another. However, there are some rock piles that are ever-standing because of their workmanship. They are to be admired for their Jenga-like quality. But for the rest of us, ten rocks balancing on top of each other is a fun mark of our accomplishment crossing the line of the Arctic Circle.