Johanne Øien Persen

Johanne grew up in Kjøllefjord on the coast of Finnmark, a small fishing village with only 1,000 inhabitants and the rough Barents Sea as her nearest neighbour. Nature reigns supreme there, and Johanne has been active in the wilderness all her life. She drives boats and snowmobiles, fishes at sea and in mountain lakes and hunts grouse on Finnmarksvidda. She is also a former biathlete.

If you’ve been with Johanne out in the nature with us, you know that she is a steady guide, who takes the Arctic challenges with great composure. Johanne guides in both summer and winter, and is also a host at Nordenskiöld Lodge. Right now she is training as an arctic nature guide (ANG) in Longyearbyen.

– I had worked a bit in tourism before I moved to Svalbard. Among other things, I showed visitors how we cut cod tongues and block fish. It’s really fun to experience the guests’ excitement and interest in something that is completely everyday for us in Kjøllefjord, smiles Johanne.

– I am very patriotic, and love Kjøllefjord and the surrounding nature. Svalbard is even more extreme, with even harsher nature, greater distances, polar bears and glaciers. It attracts me. You don’t get further north on mainland Norway than Kjøllefjord and Nordkynhalvøya, but I wanted even further towards the Arctic! That is why I am here in Svalbard. It is a great pleasure to take guests out for a walk, and show them the unique and magnificent nature up here.


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