Sarek, Aug 2023 (Part 3)

Through the Sarek Wilderness

Jesse Harrison


August 21, 2023

For the second part of this photo story, see here.

To start from the beginning, see Part 1.

Day 4 (continued): Snávvávágge

As mentioned in the third chapter of this photo story, Snávvávágge and its surroundings were perhaps my favourite part of the entire route leading from Ruohtesvágge to Rapadalen, and from there on to Skierfe. Why so? Not an easy question to answer, but there was a certain silent feeling of power to the landscape here.

The lake Snávvájávrre, in particular, struck a chord with me and filled me with a certain feeling of arrival and familiarity. On its shores I could feel memories of times already gone and of past adventures in different lands, possibly also of journeys that are yet to come.

The human mind is such an odd thing, filled with places and symbols that lie dormant until some external encounter brings them to surface. At this point I was indeed quite deep already in my head and the entire way up to Snávvávágge had been brimming with sudden thoughts along the lines of: “Am I dreaming? Am I dying? Is this another world I have just come into?”. The surface of the lake offered but a shimmer in response, stirred by the wind that this place must be so well-acquainted with.

Pitching our tents by the lake brought my thoughts back to practicalities and soon, once our camp was ready, we set off to explore the surroundings. It was not long until the feeling of mystery returned upon finding a large waterfall that drained directly into the ground below. The land here is dotted by boulders, rocks and scree of various sizes and descriptions, under which the water flowed, either into the streams further below or somewhere only known by the elements themselves, black and deep as the wall of stone behind the waterfall.

Passing a boulder field in the dimming light, we arrive at the ledge overlooking Rapadalen. The view back toward Snávvájávrre, its hues now blue and wrapped in the colour of the clouds above, felt like the unlocking of another undeciphered symbol hidden within. Something unraveled and disappeared, or rather merely changed.

Turning back to face Rapadalen, dark clouds were swirling above Stuor Skoarkki, the colours of the night now watching us as we stood on the ledge. Tomorrow we would take this way down to the dense Rapa valley.

This concludes the third part. See here for part four.