/ Lofoten - new camping and parking charges

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bandit12 - on 12 Jul 2017
Just a quick heads up for anyone heading out to Lofoten. During the last week new signs and notices have gone up at the old quay parking area underneath the Gandalf crag. Charges now apply for up to 8hrs, up to 24hrs and for pitching a tent in any of the areas around the crag including both sides of the road. Payments are made via an app which you need to download and the notices state vehicles not paying will be towed away. Charges are approx, £10 and £15 for parking and another £10 for camping. We parked elsewhere.
Chris Craggs - on 12 Jul 2017
In reply to bandit12:

Wow - that's a bit dramatic. I wonder how they can justify that when a) there are zero facilities and b) you are supposed to be able to camp anywhere for free in Norway as long as you are away from dwellings.

Chris
Thorbjorn - on 12 Jul 2017
In reply to bandit12:

Just before the the first bridge going to Henningsvær, on your left hand site, there is a good parking, nice tent spots. Good bouldering, junior, and senior wall within a minute. Gandalf wall, Festvåg walls, Henningsvær and climbers cafe within walking distance. And its free of course!
bandit12 - on 12 Jul 2017
In reply to Chris Craggs:

Yes, still no facilities, the signs says take your rubbish to the car park in Henningsvaer. Currently no changes in Kalle, Paradiset camping areas but this all happened very quickly so who knows. They have also cleared an area behind the coach parking in Henningsvaer and introduced overnight charges for motorhomes.
bandit12 - on 12 Jul 2017
In reply to Thorbjorn:

Yes, we've had a couple of nights there, but I guess it will come under increasing pressure being a much smaller area.
Thorbjorn - on 12 Jul 2017
In reply to bandit12:

You might be right. There are also nice spots in Henningsvær. Aim for the big radio mast, and you will find it.
Big Lee - on 12 Jul 2017
In reply to bandit12:

What Chris said.

As long as you are camped 150m away from inhabited buildings and obviously not on farmed land then you are 100% legal.

https://www.visitnorway.com/plan-your-trip/travel-tips-a-z/right-of-access/

As for the parking, I parked off the back off the lay-by underneath Gandalf, off the gravel, and so I wouldn't have thought any road regulations can apply for the same reason. Since I'm not actually on the highway in any way. Are there any roadworks planned?

It all sounds like a scam to me.

Which payment app is it?
GarethSL on 12 Jul 2017
In reply to bandit12:

Thats totally bizarre, do you have the name of the app? A quick search on the play store doesn't reveal much for Android users. I would like to see some written terms and conditions.

I can't see who would be enforcing the payment for tent campers, as it's likely outside of the remit for local parking companies and unlikely that the police will be interested.

I'm not surprised it's come to this tho, Lofoten is horrendously busy.
Big Lee - on 12 Jul 2017
In reply to bandit12:

Also, what's the company involved? Easy Park is by far the biggest parking company but they can't enforce any camping charges as I mentioned above. They have their own app.

I've never heard of vehicles simply being towed away in Norway, except when on private property. Usually it's a ticket first.

I take it the sign is in Norwegian, otherwise dual language? If it's just in English then I would be double wary that it's a scam. Everything is very regulated in Norway, including parking signs!
bandit12 - on 12 Jul 2017
In reply to Big Lee:

The app for the Gandalf quay area is GoMarina, in Henningsvaer it's Easy Park. I'm guessing someone has bought or leased the old quay and surrounding land but does seem strange that it could include all the other land beneath the crag and along the shore. I have a photo of the signs it's professionally done and very large about 1.2m by 2.4m. Interesting the signs are only in English and no company name or contact details just the app details.
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pec on 12 Jul 2017
In reply to bandit12:

Surely only payment by an app can't be enforceable, not everybody has a smartphone or could be certain to actually have a functioning smartphone with them, and signs only in English? I seem to recall the toll road signs were only in Norwegian so we didn't know how to pay them (we got a bill when we got home).
Could this be a scam?
Chris Craggs - on 12 Jul 2017
In reply to bandit12:

I suspect the road widening and placing of the crash-barriers last year has brought this to a head as everyone has been pushed down to the old quay for parking. If, as I suspect, that is private ground then no wonder problems have arisen. I still can't see how they can stop you camping up near Gandalf.

Chris
Cody - on 12 Jul 2017
In reply to bandit12:

Probably just a local land owner trying to take advantage of tourism and seeing what they can get.

I was at Haukland the other night, which has clearly posted 'no camping' signs. For some reason the police also made a patrol by as I was there. 20+ motor homes parked and a dozen+ tents. Police didn't even get out of the car and barely slowed down as they made a loop of the parking area. I could have made a killing had I pretended to be some sort of authority and charged an on the spot fee to all the Germans...

Same story can be said for the parking at Å and Skagsanden on any given night.

Unless you are breaking an actual parking regulation - parking on the road in an 80 zone, etc, I doubt much will be enforced.
Big Lee - on 12 Jul 2017
In reply to bandit12:

> I'm guessing someone has bought or leased the old quay and surrounding land but does seem strange that it could include all the other land beneath the crag and along the shore.

It wouldn't make any difference if they had. Right to roam laws would still allow me to wild camp on the land.

Chris Craggs - on 13 Jul 2017
In reply to Big Lee:

According to the thread on FB the locals are looking into this. The parking by the quay is private land so they can charge for parking, the camping at Gandalf is more than 150m from any houses so you can still camp there for free - the issue, because of the new barriers, is where to leave the car now,


Chris
Storm Hunter - on 06 Aug 2017
In reply to Chris Craggs:

They have last week extended the crash barrier in front of the quay area to make it very clearly off road, private land. I have t seen any one being towed yet so either everyone is paying (as if) or they are not too bothered with enforcement yet. It would make a beautiful place for another hotel but that doesn't help us broke climbers! We have managed to park by the bridge most days and walk back but there isn't room for everyone!
A lot of people at Kalle had moved camp there to avoid any issues which has not eased the congestion there either.
Hope a solution is found soo.
Chris Craggs - on 06 Aug 2017
In reply to Storm Hunter:

Removing a section of barrier so the old Gandalf parking was accessible would appear to be an obvious answer - to simple maybe?


Chris

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