This site is connected with the course "Sami Culture, Yesterday and Today." But any and all are welcome to view this site and think about the cultural experience of snow.birch tree with adhering snow


Over the centuries, people speaking Sámi languages have developed extensive and nuanced terminology for describing snow.

It can be described in terms of texture and quality; patch of soft snow on bare ground, northern Sweden


Distribution on the ground; mountain showing uneven distribution of snow in patches "bievlla"


degree to which it is trodden or marked by tracks and prints;

reindeer prints in soft deep snow


degree to which it is easy to ski on,

path through a snowy forest showing tracks of snowmobile


and many other characteristics.

scene of snow beside open water in mountains


By clicking on any of the links above, you can learn some 28 different terms for snow types in Lule Sámi, as documented by Yngvar Ryd in his interviews with Sámi reindeer herder Johan Rassa over the course of five winters.