Loktajohka Waterfall

Bjorkliden, Norrbotten County, Sweden

About Loktajohka Waterfall


Hiking Distance: roadside; 1.6km round trip (to main drop with railroad crossing and scrambling)
Suggested Time: about 45 minutes

Date first visited: 2019-07-07
Date last visited: 2019-07-07

Waterfall Latitude: 68.4211
Waterfall Longitude: 18.35858

The Loktajohka Waterfall (also spelled Låktatjåkka) was kind of an inadvertent waterfall encounter when I was driving from Narvik to pursue the Silverfallet by Bjorkliden.

However, during the drive, I simply couldn’t ignore any longer the scenery through cross-border plateau (shared between Norway and Sweden).

Lappland_159_07072019 - The Loktajohka Waterfall as seen from a hill while swarmed by lots of mosquitos
The Loktajohka Waterfall as seen from a hill while swarmed by lots of mosquitos

It compelled me to extend my visit here by making more frequent stops.

Particularly since the Loktajohka Stream was signposted, that pretty much closed the deal for me as I realized that there was a hike to get a more intimate look at the waterfall on the Loktajohka Stream.

Indeed, if not for this chain of events and thought process, this would just be another miscellaneous roadside waterfall and this page wouldn’t have been written.

Obscure Waterfall

To my knowledge, not much has been written about this particular waterfall even though I noticed this waterfall from the busy and fast-moving E10 road between Narvik, Norway and Kiruna, Sweden.

In addition to its fairly easily-seen location, I noticed signage as well as a faint-but-established trail leading closer to the falls.

Lappland_112_07072019 - Distant view of the full context of the sloping Loktajohka Waterfall from the E10
Distant view of the full context of the sloping Loktajohka Waterfall from the E10

It turned out that this trail followed the Loktajohka Stream, and it happened to go towards the highest mountain cabin in Sweden at Låktatjåkko (said to be 1230m altitude).

While that hike involves a much longer mountain trek with some degree of self-sufficiency, I only needed to go uphill about 700m to get up to the foot of the main drop of the Loktajohka Waterfall.

And despite all of these signs of importance and notoriety, the falls still seems to have somewhat of an obscure character about it as evidenced by its lack of presence in the literature.

Whatever the case, I guess this aspect allowed me to enjoy the experience of visiting this waterfall alone.

Experiencing the Loktajohka Waterfall

From the nearest signed pullout (see directions below), I took to the south side of the E10 and followed a faint path following the sign saying “Rallarvägen Loktajohka”.

Lappland_122_07072019 - Following the trail to get closer to the Loktajohka Waterfall
Following the trail to get closer to the Loktajohka Waterfall

After initially going through a grove of short trees, the path ascended to alongside the Loktajohka Stream before reaching a footbridge over the stream next to what appeared to be shelters or relics.

I wasn’t sure what they were there for, but they appeared to have gotten some recent use, and I doubted there was something historical about them.

Beyond the bridge, the trail continued to ascend up to railroad tracks.

I wasn’t sure if the train stops here, but I did see the train often enough during this hike to know that the railway was fairly active.

This railway was once part of the Navvy Road West, which was part of the larger Navvy Road that served an important role as a supply route between near Abisko National Park to Rombaksbotn in Norway.

Lappland_199_07072019 - Looking back across the railroad tracks on the way up to the Loktajohka Waterfall
Looking back across the railroad tracks on the way up to the Loktajohka Waterfall

Beyond the railroad tracks, the trail continued to follow the rushing Loktajohka before veering more to the left to climb steeply up a hill.

At the top of this hill, I managed to get a nice panorama that included a satisfying view of the Loktajohka Waterfall as well as views in the opposite direction towards lakes as well as the attractive plateau that the E10 passed through.

I couldn’t linger here for too long, however, because I quickly found out that there were many mosquitos swarming around here.

Continuing further uphill on the semi-muddy trail, I eventually got to the foot of the main drop of the Loktajohka Waterfall in another 120m.

Lappland_180_07072019 - Making it up to the foot of the Loktajohka Waterfall
Making it up to the foot of the Loktajohka Waterfall

From this perspective, the falls looked a lot shorter due to its cascading nature.

Personally, I think the falls was most attractive when seen from further away (e.g. that bluff where I was getting swarmed by mozzies).

After having my fill of the falls, I then descended back downhill to the E10 while enjoying the views along the way.

Overall, I spent about 40 minutes away from the car, and my GPS logs said I covered about 1.5km round trip.

Authorities

The Loktajohka Waterfall was near the village of Björkliden, which belonged to the municipality of Kiruna in Norrbotten County, Sweden. For information or inquiries about the area as well as current conditions, you may want to try the local municipality website.

Lappland_094_07072019 - Driving along the E10 beneath an imposing massif full of waterfalls (including the Loktajohka Waterfall)
Lappland_103_07072019 - Looking up towards the massif draped by many waterfalls
Lappland_098_07072019 - Looking further down the massif towards more waterfalls draping its cliff towards the E10
Lappland_099_07072019 - Another contextual look from the E10 towards the massif draped with waterfalls
Lappland_107_07072019 - Looking along the context of the E10 and the imposing massif alongside it
Lappland_108_07072019 - More waterfalls tumbling down the massif alongside the E10
Lappland_110_07072019 - Looking further to the west along the E10 with some imposing snow-covered mountains
Lappland_113_07072019 - Another look along the E10 by the pullout before I started on the Loktajohka Waterfall hike
Lappland_117_07072019 - Looking towards the east along the E10 before I started the Loktajohka Waterfall hike
Lappland_126_07072019 - Following the trail leading alongside the Loktajohka Stream
Lappland_129_07072019 - At the footbridge crossing over Loktajohka
Lappland_134_07072019 - Looking towards some kind of actively used shelter on the way up to the Loktajohka Waterfall
Lappland_135_07072019 - Context of the Loktajohka Waterfall with that actively-used shelter in the foreground
Lappland_136_07072019 - Approaching the railway as I was continuing to head closer to the Loktajohka Waterfall
Lappland_140_07072019 - Looking towards the west as I was about to cross the railway en route to the Loktajohka Waterfall
Lappland_143_07072019 - Looking upstream at the Loktajohka Waterfall from the railway
Lappland_145_07072019 - Continuing on the narrow and semi-muddy trail (full of mosquitos) to the Loktajohka Waterfall
Lappland_149_07072019 - The trail continues to skirt alongside the Loktajohka Stream
Lappland_162_07072019 - After a steep climb to the top of a hill, the trail resumes its meander to get right up to the base of the Loktajohka Waterfall
Lappland_165_07072019 - Looking to the west from the trail at this point yielded a nice view of the surrounding plateau
Lappland_171_07072019 - Looking downstream against the evening sun yielded this view back towards the railway, the E10, and the Låktajaure
Lappland_172_07072019 - Continuing to approach the Loktajohka Waterfall
Lappland_174_07072019 - Finally at the foot of the Loktajohka Waterfall
Lappland_182_07072019 - Looking back at the trail made muddy by the active spray from the Loktajohka Waterfall
Lappland_185_07072019 - While wildflowers are pretty, they also signify the presence of freshwater and thus mosquitos
Lappland_189_07072019 - After having my fill of the Loktajohka Waterfall, I headed back downhill
Lappland_191_07072019 - Last look at the Loktajohka Waterfall on the way back down
Lappland_195_07072019 - I wasn't sure what these fences did, but I wondered if they might have to do with acting as an avalanche break
Lappland_197_07072019 - Back at the railway after leaving Loktajohka Waterfall
Lappland_202_07072019 - Returning to the shelters
Lappland_208_07072019 - Looking back at the footbridge that I had crossed earlier en route to the end of my hike to Loktajohka Waterfall
Lappland_209_07072019 - Following the Loktajohka Stream all the way back to the E10. I think this one was on the Gearrgejohka

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Since I made my drive from Narvik, I’ll describe the driving directions from there.

So from the city, the most straightward way (i.e. paying tolls) would be to headed north on the E6 for a little over 7km as the road crosses over the long bridge over the Rombaken.

Lappland_102_07072019 - Context of the pullouts along the E10 that served to both allow faster drivers to pass as well as to stop the car to do a little more intimate exploring of Swedish Lapland
Context of the pullouts along the E10 that served to both allow faster drivers to pass as well as to stop the car to do a little more intimate exploring of Swedish Lapland

Shortly after the bridge, the E6 junctioned with the E10, where I then turned right to go onto another toll section shortly thereafter.

From there, I’d follow the E10 for about 49km (crossing the border after about 34km).

By that point, there was a modest-sized pullout on the left side of the road by a “P” sign. On the opposite side, there was a smaller sign pointing the way to the Rallarvägen Loktajohka.

Overall, this drive took me less than an hour though I was tempted to make many stops along the way.

Lappland_116_07072019 - Looking back across the E10 towards the pullout where I stopped the car to do the hike to get closer to Loktajohka Waterfall
Looking back across the E10 towards the pullout where I stopped the car to do the hike to get closer to Loktajohka Waterfall

Going in the opposite direction, Kiruna would require me to drive northwest on the E10 for about 107km (taking over an hour).

It was about 18km further west of Silverfallet.

For geographic context, Björkliden was about 71km (about an hour drive) east of Narvik, Norway, and 104km (about 75 minutes drive) northwest of Kiruna.

Sweep showing train tracks and downstream scenery before panning over to the cascading waterfalls as seen from a bluff


Downstream to upstream sweep from the misty base of the main drop of the falls

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Tagged with: bjorkliden, kiruna, norrbotten, sweden, waterfall, lappland, tornetrask, abisko, narvik, e10, loktajohka, gearggejohka, lapland



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