Jämtland and Härjedalen
Jämtland and Härjedalen, twin provinces that border Norway and comprise the southwestern portion of North Sweden, are a skier's paradise. There are more than 300 ski slopes here, with 150 ski lifts and 1,000 kilometers (600 miles) of groomed ski tracks, and another 1,000 kilometers of marked cross-country ski trails. Snowfall is reliable and plentiful, the terrain supremely varied, and the lift lines happily short. Here, skiing is king!
And yet, Jämtland and Härjedalen are also popular summer destinations, home to such well-established resorts as Åre in Jämtland and Funäsdalen in Härjedalen, which attracts visitors by the hundreds, albeit mostly Swedes and northern Europeans. Summertime recreational activities here include hiking, biking, whitewater rafting, canoeing, fishing, horseback riding and rock climbing.
Jämtland and Härjedalen together encompass some 45,963 sq km (17,746 sq miles) – roughly the size of New Hampshire and Vermont combined and larger than the entire country of Denmark – largely made up of mountains, lakes, rivers and streams, forests, glaciers, and tundra. The highest mountain here is Helags, 1,796 meters (5.892 feet) high, with several other quite impressive mountains strung along here as well, notable among them Sylarna Massif which rises to over 1,700 meters (5,577 feet), and Åreskutan in the Årefjällen mountains that reaches 1,420 meters (4,569 feet) at the summit. There are actually some 1.1 million hectares (2.7 million acres) of mountains here, owned by the state and designated renbetesfjall (“reindeer-grazing-mountains”) – so named because more than 50,000 reindeer, owned by the indigenous Sami people from 11 Sami villages, graze here. There are also more than 17,000 lakes and over 2,800 km (1,740 miles) of rivers and streams in the area, as well as one national park, Sonfjället, and over 40 nature preserves, collectively making this an outdoor enthusiast's dream.
Jämtland and Härjedalen have a resident population of roughly 150,00.
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