Discover where to find the best view of Segla on Senja Island in Norway. Try great Senja hiking opportunities and go for the Hesten hike to be rewarded with wonderful views.
Segla is the most recognizable mountain on Senja Island in Norway. It was the picture of Segla that immediately convinced me to visit Senja. And there is no surprise why! Segla rises 639 meters above sea level and the view of it looks almost unreal. The east side of the mountain is rising gently, whereas the steep cliffs on the west side drop directly into the fjord. When I posted a picture of it on my Facebook page, someone asked if it was photoshopped and the places like those really exist. The hikes to Segla and Hesten are worth being put on the list of the best hikes in Norway!
The island of Senja in Norway has a very diverse landscape. The landscape in the north part of the island, in northern Norway, reminds one of the Dolomites with the craggy mountains. It also stays very Norwegian-like with the green waters of the fjords and red wooden houses. With tons of exciting things to do on Senja, you will find something for everyone.
The visit to Senja would be incomplete without giving Segla Mountain a closer look and trying the fine Senja hiking opportunities.
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Senja hiking trails for Segla mountain
There are two main hikes that you can do in the proximity to Segla. The first one, hiking Segla itself, offers an amazing view of the area, but it doesn’t provide the opportunity to see the famous peak. For that, you need to climb a mountain just next to Segla, called Hesten.
We decided to hike to Hesten for the best views of Segla and camp on the top. As it turned out, camping on the peak wasn’t possible, but we still managed to find a spot below. The night was very windy, and I was scared that we will get blown away, but everything was fine. Pro tip: tie the sides of the tent to the big stones.
I described both hiking trails on Senja below.
The best view to Segla on Senja – the hike to Hesten
Hesten is a mountain which the iconic picture of Segla is usually taken from. Because of that, hiking Hesten on Senja was a must for us. It was also our favorite of Senja hikes.
Like this one.
Or this one.
The hiking trail to Hesten is not very long and not very strenuous. It’s steep in places and it involves some scrambling especially closer to the top. Hesten, similarly to Segla, also has one side with a sharp drop to the sea. If you don’t want to, you don’t need to go all the way up, especially if you have a fear of heights. The view from the ridge between Hesten and Stavelitippen, around 100 meters below the main peak, already provides great views of Segla and Korkedalen Valley.
However, if you can, I recommend going all the way to the summit of Hesten, as the views are spectacular. From there you can see a 360-degree panorama of the Mefjorden and Korkedalen Valley and Kongen Mountain.
Some of the good views to Segla are also from the lower part of Hesten, towards the fjord-side, close to the cliff edge. The safest way to get there is to turn left before you start climbing towards the ridge. We didn’t make it there, as the weather changed, and it started raining.
Senja hiking – the details of the hike to Hesten
Generally, the best season for climbing Hesten is from June to September. It is also possible to do some Senja winter hiking there, but only with enough experience and proper equipment. We did the hike at the end of May and there was still a lot of snow on the mountain and on the ridge, as you can see from the pictures.
3.7 km return
2 hours to the top and 1 hour down
Hesten is 556 meters high and the elevation gain during the hike is around 520 meters.
How to get to the start of the Hesten hike in Senja
Drive to Fjordgård, a small village, just after the turn from the Norwegian Scenic Route on Senja. You can park your car at the start of the trail to Segla where there are more spaces. You can also find a few spots directly at the beginning of the trail to Hesten, but not too many.
The trail to Hesten starts next to the wooden hut, at the bottom of the ski slope. The path is clear all the way up, but there is only one signpost at the bottom. The only place where the path can be hard to find, especially after rain, is inside the small forest. It can get quite boggy there, so just head up the hill keeping the view to Segla on your left side.
Where to stay in Senja
We loved camping on Senja, when we were there, especially wild camping. This is also what we’ve chosen on the way to Hesten. It is not possible to camp on the top of Hesten, as it’s very exposed, rocky and windy (and located on top of the 600 meters high cliff). Instead, you can find some camping spots below the ridge.
There are also other options to stay on the island, unfortunately not always located very close to Segla. Options for where to stay on Senja are:
Hamn i Senja – The Hamn i Senja is a picturesque resort that lies on a little island near Hamn. The water around is turquoise and there is even a little marina if you wish to come there by boat. Check availability and prices here.
Senja camping options in the northern part of the island include Fjordbotn Camping. I also recommend wild camping.
What to take for the hike to Segla, Senja:
- Water – there were a few streams at the mountain when we were there, but the water might not be safe to drink unless filtered due to animal contamination. If you plan to drink the water from the stream, I recommend taking a water filter, like a LifeStraw.
- food, and snacks. I always take natural and vegan nakd bars.
- waterproof shoes with sturdy soles, I recommend hiking shoes from Merrell, Salomon or La Sportiva.
- waterproof/windproof jacket (even in the summer) – it can get very windy and cold on the top and the weather changes quickly. We were hiking up in the sun and going down in the rain. I use my Marmot Goretex jacket anywhere I go.
- warm clothes – I love and always recommend merino wool base layers, like this merino wool top and this merino wool bottoms (the bottom might not be needed for the summer months hiking, but can be good for camping).
The hike to Segla
The Segla hike on Senja is the island’s most popular hike. It offers good views of Mefjord and the mountains around. However, due to its popularity, the trail has been worn and can get busy. Being on top of Segla, you can’t see the view of Segla itself either. Therefore, if you need to choose, I would suggest doing the hike to Hesten instead and then trying some of the other Senja hiking opportunities the island offers.
The main season is between June to September. You would need to check with local guides and the conditions if it is possible to do the Segla hike in winter.
Around 4km return
You can start the hike from the same village where you start the hike to Hesten.
Would you like to try some Senja hiking opportunities and see the iconic view of Segla on Senja Island? Have you done the Hesten hike before? Let me know in the comments!
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