Scandinavian Mountains

From Infogalactic: the planetary knowledge core
Jump to: navigation, search
Scandinavian Mountains
Skanderna, Fjällen, Kjølen, Skandit
Ahkka from Maukojaureh.jpg
Mount Áhkká in Stora Sjöfallet National Park, Northern Sweden
Highest point
Peak Galdhøpiggen (Lom)
Elevation 2,469 m (8,100 ft) [1]
Coordinates Lua error in Module:Coordinates at line 668: callParserFunction: function "#coordinates" was not found.
Length 1,700 km (1,100 mi) [2]
Width 320 km (200 mi) [2]
The Scandinavian Mountains
The Scandinavian Mountains
Countries Norway, Sweden and Finland
Range coordinates Lua error in Module:Coordinates at line 668: callParserFunction: function "#coordinates" was not found.

The Scandinavian Mountains or the Scandes is a mountain range that runs through the Scandinavian Peninsula. The Scandinavian Mountains are often erroneously thought to be equivalent to the Scandinavian Caledonides. The western sides of the mountains drop precipitously into the North Sea and Norwegian Sea, forming the famous fjords of Norway, whereas to the northeast they gradually curve towards Finland. To the north they form the border between Norway and Sweden, still reaching 2,000 m high (6,600 ft) at the Arctic Circle. The mountain range just touches northwesternmost Finland, but are scarcely more than hills at their northernmost extension at the North Cape (Nordkapp).

The mountains are not very high, but are very steep at places; Galdhøpiggen in southern Norway is the highest peak, at 2,469 metres (8,100 ft), Kebnekaise has the highest peak on the Swedish side, at 2,104 m (6,903 ft), whereas Halti is the highest peak in Finland, at 1,324 m (4,344 ft).

The combination of a northerly location and moisture from the North Atlantic Ocean has caused the formation of many ice fields and glaciers. Temperature drops with increasing altitude, and permafrost becomes common from about 1,500 meters above sea level on their western slope in Southern Norway and at about 1,200 meter AMSL on their eastern slope in Southern Norway near the border with Sweden. In Northern Norway, permafrost becomes common from about 800 to 900 meters AMSL on the western slope and some 200- to 300-meters-lower on the eastern slope.[3]

The Scandinavian Mountains show clearly in this satellite photo of the Scandinavian Peninsula from February 2003.

The Scandinavian mountains are composed of Precambrian and Paleozoic rocks, and are commonly characterized by steep sides and relatively flat tops. The rocks underlying the mountains are part of a system geologically connected with the mountains of Scotland, Ireland and, crossing the Atlantic Ocean, the Appalachian Mountains of North America.[citation needed].

The origin of today's mountain topography is debated by geologists. During the Paleozoic, a continental collision between Scandinavia and Greenland produced a Himalayas-sized mountain range named the Caledonide Mountains. The Caledonide Mountains underwent an extensional collapse during the Devonian. Severe continental extension occurred at the Scandinavian margin during Permian and Mesozoic time, followed by continental breakup and sea floor spreading around 55 million years ago. Many geologists consider the flat tops of the mountains as evidence that the Paleozoic Caledonide Mountains were essentially destroyed by erosion and that a low-relief, low-elevation peneplain was later uplifted. A few geophysicists consider the current mountains to be remnants of the Caledonian mountains. Under this hypothesis the Caledonide Mountains were eroded to one-fifth of their original height, and would be one of the oldest still-extant mountain ranges in the world.[citation needed]

The Scandinavian Montane Birch forest and grasslands terrestrial ecoregion is closely associated with the mountain range.

Names in Scandinavia

Its names in the Scandinavian languages are, in Swedish Skanderna,[4] Fjällen ("the Fells") or Kölen (Fjällen being by far the most[citation needed] frequent name and virtually the only one in modern colloquial speech in Sweden), in Finnish Skandit or uncommonly used Köli and in Norwegian Kjølen, with the three latter meaning The Keel. In 2013 another[4] Norwegian name got the most votes in a naming contest started by Norsk Geologisk Forening and Den Norske Turistforening[5]Nordryggen ("the north ridge").

Highest mountains in Norway

Of the 10 highest mountain peaks in Scandinavia (prominence greater than 30 m or 98 ft), six are situated in Oppland, Norway. The other four are situated in Sogn og Fjordane, Norway. There are 83 peaks equal to or taller than 2,200 m (7,218 ft) in Norway.

  1. 2,469 m (8,100 ft) Galdhøpiggen (Oppland)
  2. 2,465 m (8,087 ft) Glittertind (Oppland)
  3. 2,405 m (7,890 ft) Store Skagastølstind (Sogn og Fjordane)
  4. 2,387 m (7,831 ft) Store Styggedalstinden east (Sogn og Fjordane)
  5. 2,373 m (7,785 ft) Skarstind (Oppland)
  6. 2,369 m (7,772 ft) Vesle Galdhøpiggen (Oppland)
  7. 2,368 m (7,769 ft) Surtningssue (Oppland)
  8. 2,366 m (7,762 ft) Store Memurutinden (Oppland)
  9. 2,351 m (7,713 ft) Jervvasstind (Sogn og Fjordane)
  10. 2,348 m (7,703 ft) Sentraltind (Sogn og Fjordane)

Highest mountains in Sweden

There are 12 peaks in Sweden that reach above 2,000 m high (6,600 ft), or 13 depending on how you define a peak. This list is defined according to UIAA. Eight of them are located in Sarek National Park and the neighbouring national park Stora Sjöfallet. The other four peaks are located in the further north region of Kebnekaise. All mountain names are in Sami but with the more common Swedish spelling of it.

  1. 2,104 m (6,903 ft) Kebnekaise (Lappland) - Note: Altitude includes the peak glacier. If melting continues, Kebnekaise Nordtoppen, just 500 meters away, might become the highest point.
  2. 2,097 m (6,880 ft) Kebnekaise Nordtoppen (Lappland) - the highest fixed point in Sweden.
  3. 2,089 m (6,854 ft) Sarektjåkkå Stortoppen (Lappland)
  4. 2,076 m (6,811 ft) Kaskasatjåkka (Lappland)
  5. 2,056 m (6,745 ft) Sarektjåkkå Nordtoppen (Lappland)
  6. 2,043 m (6,703 ft) Kaskasapakte (Lappland)
  7. 2,023 m (6,637 ft) Sarektjåkkå Sydtoppen (Lappland)
  8. 2,016 m (6,614 ft) Akka Stortoppen (Lappland)
  9. 2,010 m (6,594 ft) Akka Nordvästtoppen (Lappland)
  10. 2,010 m (6,594 ft) Sarektjåkkå Buchttoppen (Lappland)
  11. 2,005 m (6,578 ft) Pårtetjåkka (Lappland)
  12. 2,002 m (6,568 ft) Palkatjåkka (Lappland)

Other popular mountains for skiers, climbers and hikers in Sweden

Highest mountains in Finland

Landscape as seen from Meekonvaara (1019m) towards the highest fells
  1. 1,324 m (4,344 ft) Halti (Lappi/Lappland and Norwegian Troms)
  2. 1,317 m (4,321 ft) Ridnitsohkka (Lappi/Lappland)
  3. 1,280 m (4,200 ft) Kiedditsohkka (Lappi/Lappland)
  4. 1,240 m (4,068 ft) Kovddoskaisi (Lappi/Lappland)
  5. 1,239 m (4,065 ft) Ruvdnaoaivi (Lappi/Lappland)
  6. 1,180 m (3,871 ft) Loassonibba (Lappi/Lappland)
  7. 1,150 m (3,773 ft) Urtasvaara (Lappi/Lappland)
  8. 1,144 m (3,753 ft) Kahperusvaarat (Lappi/Lappland)
  9. 1,130 m (3,707 ft) Aldorassa (Lappi/Lappland)
  10. 1,100 m (3,608 ft) Kieddoaivi (Lappi/Lappland)

Highest independent prominence in Finland is found at Taivaskero. At 807 m high.

See also

Scandinavian Mountains biogeographical region as defined by the European Agency of Environment and corrected by the Norwegian directorate for Nature Management. Red = Alpine region, Yellow = Atlantic region, green = Boreal region, blue = Arctic region.


  1. "Galdhøpiggen". Nationalencyklopedin (in Swedish). Retrieved 18 July 2010.CS1 maint: unrecognized language (link)<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. 2.0 2.1 Lindström, Maurits. "fjällkedjan". Nationalencyklopedin (in Swedish). Retrieved 18 July 2010.CS1 maint: unrecognized language (link)<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  4. 4.0 4.1 "- Nordryggen, hæ ?". Dagbladet (in Norwegian). 14 September 2013. Unknown parameter |trans_title= ignored (help)CS1 maint: unrecognized language (link)<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  5. Fjellkjeden skal hete Nordryggen

External links

Media related to Scandinavian Mountains at Wikimedia Commons