Sarek national park
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One of the original nine national parks of Sweden designated by the government in 1909, Sarek's national park is located in the Jokkmokk district in the northernmost part of Swedish Lapland, just south of the national park Stora sjöfallet. Located between the source-lakes of the Greater Lule River and the Smaller Lule River, the park covers an area of 1,970 square kilometers (760 square miles), making it the second largest in the country. It is dominated by some of the largest mountains in the country and generally unforgiving terrain.
The King's Trail (Kungsleden), a 440-kilometer (275 miles) hiking trail beginning at Abisko and terminating at Hemavan touches the southeastern border of the park, but apart from this, the park is not a hospitable environment for tourists other than highly experienced mountaineers and wildlife experts. The northernmost part of the park is accessible by boat from Ritsem, north of the Akkajaure mountain.
Though the park contains no facilities and very few bridges, it has a vast variety of natural features for those experienced enough to enjoy it. Narrow valleys are surrounded by sharp mountain peaks, which are tall by Swedish standards, reaching over 2,000 meters (6560 feet) above sea level.
Rivers rage freely and flood often, and rapidly changing weather poses a threat to the inexperienced visitor, as do frequently occurring avalanches and fierce blizzards during the winter. As large parts of the park consist of some one hundred glaciers and several mountain peaks above the tree line, there is little life here, but in the Rapa delta, animal life is thriving.
Animals found in the valleys include bear, lynx, large elk, and wolverine. These are dangerous animals, and their presence is another reason for the inexperienced to think twice about going here. The plant life, by contrast, is all the more peaceful. The Rapa valley is home to a large population of birch trees, willows and herbs.
Sarek is part of Laponia, declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. Three Sami communities have their reindeers' grazing lands here.
Following is a translation of the conditions governing Sarek national park. I am neither a lawyer, nor a translator. This is for educational purposes only. Do not blame me if you get in trouble, yada, yada. The conditions translated into the text below apply only to Sarek. Other national parks have other conditions specified for them.
Public notice with conditions regarding SAREK national park; SNFS (1987:9)
Supported by 4 § of the national park ordinance (1987:938), the Swedish Environmental Protection Agency announces the following conditions for the national park according to 5 § second section of the environmental protection act (1964:822).
Within the national park it is forbidden to
- stock items
- run cables through the ground or air
- construct trails or roads
- raise or expand buildings or other facilities
- conduct military training exercises
- conduct scientific investigations
- conduct business
- dig, excavate, fill, drill, chisel, paint, blast or otherwise damage ground and boulders
- remove minerals or other geological material
- break branches, cut down or otherwise damage living or dead trees, shrubs and bushes
- introduce plant or animal species
- pick or dig up plants
- collect or catch insects, fish or other animals or otherwise disturb animal life
- hunt or fish
- use motorized vehicle or motorboat
- use a rowing boat, canoe, kayak or other waterborne vehicle in the Rapa valley downstream Sarvejåkka's affluent to Rapaätno
- land by aircraft
- fly in valleys as well as less than 300 meters above ground
- practice horseback-riding
- bring dogs
- post a sign, poster or similar
- arrange orienteering checkpoints or marked trails
The Swedish Environmental Protection Agency can - if special circumstances are present - announce exceptions from given restrictions.
Without hindrance by the above prohibitions, it is permissible
- for staff authorized by the national park bailiff to conduct measures according to determined plan of maintenance
- for an official in official matters concerning issues of reindeer keeping, the police, or the national park management to use motorboats, terrain scooter on snow-covered ground, to fly in valleys as well as less than 300 meters above ground, or to land by aircraft. Notification of mentioned matters shall be made to the national park management before conduct
- for an official in official matters regarding healthcare or rescue operation issues to use appropriate vehicle or fly in valleys as well as less than 300 meters above ground or to land by aircraft. Notification of mentioned matters shall be made to the national park management before conduct if possible, otherwise as soon as possible upon completion of the mission
- for members of Sirkas sameby, Jåkkåkaska sameby and Tuorpon sameby in relation to reindeer keeping tasks or fishing for household needs or trade to use motorboat, terrain scooter on snow-covered ground, to fly in valleys as well as less than 300 meters above ground or to land by aircraft as well as selling traditional bread, fish and similar
- to gather berries and mushrooms
- to take dry branches and twigs to make a fire or arrange a shelter
- to bring a leashed dog during the time from January 1 to April 30 within the entire national park as well as the entire year while walking on the King's trail.
Passing into law
This public notice will pass into law on January 1, 1988.
Information synthesized from www.environ.se and www.fjallen.nu.