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Dive Review of Saltstraumen Dykkecamp in
Norwegian Sea/Northern Norway

Saltstraumen Dykkecamp: "Diving the Saltstraumen Maelstrom, Norway", Jul, 2016,

by Andrew Falconer , WA, AU (Top Contributor Top Contributor 48 reports with 23 Helpful votes). Report 10229.

No photos available at this time

Ratings and Overall Comments 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Accommodations N/A Food N/A
Service and Attitude N/A Environmental Sensitivity N/A
Dive Operation N/A Shore Diving N/A
Snorkeling N/A
Value for $$ N/A
Beginners 3 stars
Advanced 3 stars
Comments Saltstraumen is located above the Arctic Circle near Bodo in northern Norway, and is a 3km narrow (150m wide) strait that connects the Skierstad fjord to the North Sea. Up to 500,00 cubic metres of seawater forces its way in or out of the fjord every six hours, creating massive whirlpools or a maelstrom (a Norwegian word) and water velocities up to 40km per hour.

Location of Saltstraumen in Artic Norway

Saltstraumen is an exit point for a fjord

The strait is dive-able only for about 20 minutes either side of a turning tide, and is rich in sea life and has an interesting topography. Needless to say, the water is cold, about centigrade 7 degrees when I dived it in August, and colder in winter, so a good dry suit is required. There is a dive centre located nearby where all gear can be hired, and guided shore and boat dives can be organised.

Calm waters at tidal change

Rippling currents and eddies later on

The tides are greatest at full and new moon, however when I dived it was half moon, but still quite impressive. Being July and above the Arctic Circle, the sun was still up at midnight, although low in the sky meaning you can dive whenever the tide suits. Nutrient rich waters and the currents attract lots of fish such as cod, and along with them seagulls and anglers.

Kelp showing the effects of current

Wolf fish resting at Saltstraumen

I did two shore dives on in going and outgoing tides on the same day, with Fredric, a very professional and helpful instructor from the dive centre. We kept close to the shore, where the current was slack, but even so there was plenty of upwelling, making buoyancy control a challenge at times. It is definitely not a dive for a novice. Visibility was variable, making it difficult to see and photograph the schools of cod out in the channel.

A wolf fish shows its teeth

There are lots of cod to attract fishermen

Easier to photograph were the sedentary wolf fish, of which there were many hiding in crevices and resting amid the rocks. They have fearsome looking teeth to say the least. I did manage to get close to the odd cod as well.

There are some interesting walls covered with marine growth

There were some significant walls and ledges that fell away to a dark bottom of the channel where we dived. The rocks are covered with a profusion of cold water marine life, and at times there are some significant kelp beds.

July 2016
{Some photos from this trip can be found at [ link] }

Reporter and Travel

Dive Experience 501-1000 dives
Where else diving Australia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Vanuatu, South Africa, Iceland, Scotland, Norway, Cuba, Maldives, Chuuk, Galapagos, Phillipines, Sri Lanka
Closest Airport Bodo Getting There

Dive Conditions

Weather Seas
Water Temp 7-8°C / 45-46°F Wetsuit Thickness
Water Visibility 5-10 M / 16-33 Ft

Dive Policy

Dive own profile ?
Enforced diving restrictions [Unspecified]
Liveaboard? no Nitrox Available? N/A

What I Saw

Sharks None Mantas None
Dolphins None Whale Sharks None
Turtles None Whales None
Corals N/A Tropical Fish N/A
Small Critters N/A Large Fish N/A
Large Pelagics N/A

Underwater Photography 1 (worst) - 5 (best):

Subject Matter N/A Boat Facilities N/A
Overall rating for UWP's N/A Shore Facilities N/A
UW Photo Comments [None]
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Note: The information here was reported by the author above, but has NOT been reviewed nor edited by Undercurrent prior to posting on our website. Please report any major problems by writing to us and referencing the report number above.

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