The hardest part of Fjällräven Classic Sweden

Sharing my memories from participating in Fjällräven Classic Sweden, here are some thoughts on the route and what the hardest part of Fjällräven Classic might be…

Tjäktja is overrated, it’s actually super easy

I believe a lot of people are afraid of tjäktjapasset (Tjäkta pass). That is the steep incline right before the highest point. On top of that you’ll find a shelter where you can eat something, and you have the most epic view over two huge plateaus. It’s just the best spot of the whole hike, so do yourself a favor and plan for some buffer time so you can enjoy it in good weather.

However, is it the hardest part of Fjällräven Classic? No. I don’t think so. It’s a super short passage and it’s over before you know it. It’s only hard if you are really badly equipped or slow, inexperienced and weak. I would say, if you have done any mountaineering and are good on your two feet, it’s not difficult. The thing about Tjäktja is that the slope really is steep and a lot of it are large flat boulders. These flat surfaces have not much grip and are hard to hold on to in wet weather. Crampons won’t help here, and sticks neither. So just get up there with your hands and feet. As I said, it’s over faster than you know it.

Is Tjäktja the hardest part of Fjällräven Classic Sweden? No....
After reaching Tjäktja: Really happy, but this was not the hardest part.

Really the hardest part of Fjällräven Classic

The hardest part of Fjällräven Classic, in my opinion, is the first section. Not only is it long and it drags, it is also just a little more boring than the mountain sections. Until you reach Kebnekaise, you will also have to just go over so many rocks, the soil completely washed out. Meanwhile, it is a constant up and down, and therefore steep all the time. That part is just super annoying. After Kebnekaise it get’s 100% better immediately, it’s only rocky in the beginning, and then you enter a beautiful easy plateau.

Same as the birch forest part in the beginning of the hike, the final section of the trail is also not as great. You will be tired and just want to reach the finish line. I urge you not to waste your time on the camp ground a few km before the goal. Just push through and go right to the finish line. These 6 or 8 km (from Abiskojaure to finish), they are not worth a whole or half day of hiking. Unless, of course, you want one more night in a tent. But it will be kind of crowded, because it is the only one right after the nature reserve, where you can pitch your tent.

Fjällräven Classic Sweden height profile: LTR → Nikkaluokta · Kebnekaise · Singi · Sälka · Tjäktja · Alesjaure · Kieron · Abisko

Within the main hiking section from Singi to Kieron, the most difficult part of the Fjällräven Classic would be the decline before Kieron. Especially in bad weather it is hard. I was hiking that sectoin in the worst downpour. It was raining for 24 hours and I was hiking for 8 to 10, with breaks. We were super tired and slow, wetted out and had to look for a dry spot after the bridge, which is pretty challenging. Just know that there are good spots. But whenever the weather is bad, better get up early, cause it is not getting easier. It’s not like there are no spots later on. It’s just that there might not be good ones left. As in: close to a checkpoint, not in a puddle, away from trails and highly frequented areas. I mean, I went in 2021, so there were so few people, that was really nice. But I would not expect that kind of solitude today.

Anyway, this is my take on what are the most difficult sections in Fjällräven Classic in Sweden. Definitely everything rocky, because it is just more tiring… Later, on the plateaus, you can really relax. And I would recommend to maybe even go to a mountain, stay behind for a day and just enjoy the epic nature. Singi Fjällstation as well as Alesjaure are definitely pure gold for a rest day, because these spots are so beautiful. And make sure you take a swim in the Alesjärvi!

More resources

My YouTube playlist on Fjällräven Classic Sweden

…and our road trip from Munich to Kiruna:

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