Photos: amazing ice climbing in Norway

Dani Arnold and friends went climbing in the land of the Frost Giants – and truly lit up the ice.
By Josh Sampiero

Norway's Eidfjord, three hours east of Bergen, is famous for its icefalls. The frozen waterfalls are an ice climber's dream – the perfect setting for one of the most dream-like climbing shoots we've ever seen. This is the land of the infamous 'Frost Giants' .

Dani Arnold, record holder for the north face of the Eiger, and other Mammut team climbers joined photographer Thomas Senf and Swiss artist David Hediger for this incredible project. We could tell you a lot about the shoot, but we'll let the pictures speak for themselves – scroll down and enjoy.


Pro tip: use your keyboard to jump between photos
The Church of Vert
The Church of Vert Night climbing in Norway was not an entirely new experience for Dani, but the impressive light and color effects produced by spotlight and flares behind the ice certainly were. Says Arnold: "One moment the icefall looked like a dripstone cave, the next like a Gothic cathedral." © Mammut/Thomas Senf
Land of Norse legend
Land of Norse legend Many know of the Frost Giants from the recent Marvel movies featuring Thor and Loki – but the origins of the "Frost Giants" lies in Norse mythology. Legend has it the first Frost Giant was born from an icicle. © Mammut/Thomas Senf
An icefall mecca
An icefall mecca Eidfjord was relatively un-known to the ice climbing world until explorer WIll Gadd and others did a photoshoot there in 2010. © Mammut/Thomas Senf
Big ice
Big ice Eidfjord is one of the few locations in the world that boasts multiple 500m ice climbs. © Mammut/Thomas Senf
Getting night right
Getting night right “Ice climbers have often been photographed, even at night, but this proved more difficult than expected in the icy reality of the Norwegian night,” says Senf. “Only by joining forces and relying on the climber's high technical level was this possible!” © Mammut/Thomas Senf
Light at night
Light at night The illumination was the work of David Hediger, a Swiss artist who works with the medium of light. Lamps were fixed in the ice, using time-consuming rope constructions and connected to 500 meters of cable. © Mammut/Thomas Senf
Green room
Green room “I had considered for a long time how to work with artificial light, which is normally only possible in a photo studio, in major mountains,” says Thomas Senf. “The idea of illuminating frozen waterfalls was the result of a meeting with Mammut.” © Mammut/Thomas Senf
A (Frost) Giant job
A (Frost) Giant job The climbing team wasn't just there to model for the camera – their skills were needed to place the lighting equipment. "We lowered all the material down from the top of the falls and often had to improvise because of the crazy ice formations,” says Dani Arnold. © Mammut/Thomas Senf
A fun photog
A fun photog Thomas Senf doesn't just shoot – he sends his own lines, too. Together with friends he achieved the first ascent of the Harvest Moon route on the Thalay Sagar and the north face of the Arwa Tower in the Indian Himalayas. © Mammut/Thomas Senf
A wrinkle in the line
A wrinkle in the line Eidsfjord's many canyons and crannies hide away some of the biggest, baddest icefall routes and mixed climb routes in the world. © Mammut/Thomas Senf
Making lights right
Making lights right The climbers were often correcting the lamps by a few centimeters using bizarre rope constructions so that the beam was in exactly the right position. © Mammut/Thomas Senf
Blue ice
Blue ice Making this much blue ice would have kept Walt and Jesse cooking for at least five more seasons of Breaking Bad. Hey, maybe that's not a bad idea... © Mammut/Thomas Senf
read more about
Next Story