Steigen kommune

View of the village of Nordskot

Coat of arms

Nordland within

Steigen within Nordland
Coordinates: 67°47′54″N 15°10′19″E / 67.79833°N 15.17194°E / 67.79833; 15.17194Coordinates: 67°47′54″N 15°10′19″E / 67.79833°N 15.17194°E / 67.79833; 15.17194
Country Norway
County Nordland
District Salten
Administrative centre Leinesfjord
  Mayor (2007) Asle Schrøder (Sp)
  Total 1,007.86 km2 (389.14 sq mi)
  Land 962.87 km2 (371.77 sq mi)
  Water 44.99 km2 (17.37 sq mi)
Area rank 105 in Norway
Population (2012)
  Total 2,609
  Rank 282 in Norway
  Density 2.7/km2 (7/sq mi)
  Change (10 years) -9.7 %
Demonym(s) Steigværing[1]
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
  Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
ISO 3166 code NO-1848
Official language form Bokmål
Data from Statistics Norway

Steigen is a municipality in Nordland county, Norway. It is part of the traditional district of Salten. The administrative centre of the municipality is the village of Leinesfjord. Other villages include Bogen, Leines, Nordfold, Nordskot, and Sørskot. Engeløy Airport, Grådussan is located in the northern part of the municipality. Måløy–Skarholmen Lighthouse is located in the Vestfjorden in the western part of the municipality.

Part of the old garden at Løvøy. Picture by Finn Rindahl.

General information

Steigen Sagaspill (historical play), based on an old tale.
Løvøy old trading centre in Steigen. Picture by Finn Rindahl.

The municipality of Steigen was established on 1 January 1838 (see formannskapsdistrikt). The southern part of Steigen was separated on 1 September 1900 to form the new municipality of Ledingen. This left 2,216 residents in Steigen. On 1 January 1964 a major municipal merger took place. The municipality of Steigen was merged with all of Leiranger, most of Nordfold (except the Mørsvikbotn area), the small Brennsund area of Kjerringøy, and the part of Hamarøy that was south of the Sagfjorden and around the lake Storvatnet. The new municipality was also named Steigen. Prior to the merger, the population of Steigen was 1,843, and after the merger, the new municipality had 4,545 residents.[2][3]


The municipality (originally the parish) is named after the old Steigen farm (Old Norse: Steig), since the first church was built there (Steigen Church). The name is derived from the verb stíga which means "mount" or "rise" and it is referring to the high and steep mountain Steigtinden (tinden means "the peak") behind the farm.[4]


The coat-of-arms is from modern times; they were granted on 12 October 1988. The arms show three black-colored axe heads from the Viking Age on a gold background.[5]


The Church of Norway has three parishes (sokn) within the municipality of Steigen. It is part of the Salten deanery in the Diocese of Sør-Hålogaland.

Churches in Steigen
Church NameLocation
of the Church
Year Built
LeirangerLeiranger ChurchLeines1911
Leinesfjord ChapelLeinesfjorden1912
Sørskot ChapelSørskot1953
NordfoldNordfold ChurchNordfold1976
SteigenSteigen ChurchSteigen1250
Bogen ChapelBogen1926


Brennviksanden beach and Vestfjord seen from the 1048 m high mountain Kråktind.

The municipality is located along the coast of the Vestfjorden, about 100 kilometres (62 mi) north of Bodø, well inside the Arctic Circle. The road to Steigen departs from European route E06 and makes use of the 8 kilometres (5.0 mi) long Steigentunnelen (see World's longest tunnels). Steigen borders Hamarøy municipality in the north and Sørfold municipality to the south. The Vestfjorden and Lofoten are located west of Steigen. The Sagfjorden lies on the north and the Folda fjord in the south.

The municipality is mainly located on a peninsula dissected by many fjords. Steigen also includes several islands. The largest island is Engeløya, where there are ancient burial mounds (such as Sigarshaugen) and the world's most northerly naturally occurring Hazel forest in Prestegårdsskogen Nature Reserve. The largest glacier is Helldalsisen encircling a 1,361 metres (4,465 ft) mountain. Engeløya is connected to the mainland by the Engeløy Bridges.

Steigen winter panorama

Steigen has fertile lowlands in between the mountains and the sea. There are several archeological sites showing settlements from the Bronze age, Iron age, and Viking Age. Lakes in the region include Forsanvatnet, Hopvatnet, Makkvatnet, and Straumfjordvatnet.


The monthly 24-hr averages range from −1 °C (30 °F) in January and February to 13 °C (55 °F) in July and August, with precipitation ranging from 49 millimetres (1.9 in) in May to 146 millimetres (5.7 in) in October; annual average is 970 millimetres (38.2 in) and mean annual temperature is 5.1 °C (41 °F).[6]


All municipalities in Norway, including Steigen, are responsible for primary education (through 10th grade), outpatient health services, senior citizen services, unemployment and other social services, zoning, economic development, and municipal roads. The municipality is governed by a municipal council of elected representatives, which in turn elect a mayor.

Municipal council

The municipal council (Kommunestyre) of Steigen is made up of 17 representatives that are elected to every four years. Currently, the party breakdown is as follows:[7]

Steigen Kommunestyre 2015–2019
Party NameName in NorwegianNumber of
 Labour PartyArbeiderpartiet4
 Progress PartyFremskrittspartiet1
 Conservative PartyHøyre2
 Pensioners' PartyPensjonistpartiet1
 Red PartyRødt2
 Centre PartySenterpartiet5
 Socialist Left PartySosialistisk Venstreparti1
 Liberal PartyVenstre1
Total number of members:17


  1. "Navn på steder og personer: Innbyggjarnamn" (in Norwegian). Språkrådet. Retrieved 2015-12-01.
  2. Jukvam, Dag (1999). "Historisk oversikt over endringer i kommune- og fylkesinndelingen" (PDF) (in Norwegian). Statistisk sentralbyrå.
  3. Statistisk sentralbyrå (2001). "1848 Steigen. Population 1 January and population changes during the year. 1951-" (in Norwegian).
  4. Rygh, Oluf (1905). Norske gaardnavne: Nordlands amt (in Norwegian) (16 ed.). Kristiania, Norge: W. C. Fabritius & sønners bogtrikkeri. p. 249.
  5. "Kommunevåpen" (in Norwegian). Steigen Kommune. Retrieved 2008-11-29.
  6. "1961-90 base period for Grøtøy, Steigen" (in Norwegian). Norges meteorologiske institutt.
  7. "Table: 04813: Members of the local councils, by party/electoral list at the Municipal Council election (M)" (in Norwegian). Statistics Norway. 2015.

External links

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