There are many ways in which the people of Luleå make light work of the challenges brought forth in the arctic climate in which they live. Like ice skating. And twenty other ways of moving along the icy trails.

Given the waters surrounding this sea side town freeze up to a meter thick each winter you would be forgiven for thinking this creates special challenges. In fact it creates an amazing array of opportunities.

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The ice roads in Luleå usually open around February-March, depending on the thickness of the ice. The roads stretch all the way to some of the islands in the archipelago, which you can visit by car!

One of my personal favorites is the Ice Trail surrounding the town that is created by the local council each year.

Once the ice freezes to an acceptable level the brave souls of the council maintenance department run their small tractors out onto the ice and snow and carve a part ice skating rink, part walking trail.

The main trail is from the north harbour to the south harbour with several trails branching across the Luleå river to the nearby residential areas and in total they are approximately 11 km long. Along the trail you can also find wind shielded areas for taking a rest and catching a few rays.

The inspiration is the number of ways that people quite naturally seem to find to travel the ice trail and enjoy this fantastic facility.

The photos above are from a random day out on the ice trail with the good folk of Luleå where I managed to photograph about 20 different, and fun, modes of transport along the ice trails.

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