This summer’s exceptionally hot weather has seen the south peak of Kebnekaise lose the crown as Sweden’s highest point.
Instead, Kebnekaise’s north peak is now higher after soaring temperatures melted enough of the glacier that sits on top of the south peak to make the northern part of the mountain, which consists of rock rather than ice, higher.
The south peak measured 2,097 meters (6,879 feet) above sea level on July 31, down from 2,101 meters on July 2, according to data from the Tarfala research station. The north peak is 2,096.8 meters high, and the research station estimates that it overtook the south peak as Sweden’s highest point on Aug. 1 as the melting has continued.
July was in many parts of Sweden the hottest on record, with severe drought and some of the worst forest forest fires the country has ever seen. The temperature last month was 3-5 degrees Celsius hotter than normal, with even some weather stations in northern Sweden recording an average temperature above 20 degrees (68 degrees Fahrenheit), according to the Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute.
Kebnekaise Is No Longer Sweden’s Highest Peak After Hot Weather Melts 13 Feet Off the Mountain
“I have never seen as much melted snow on the south peak as I have this summer,” Gunhild Ninis Rosqvist, a geography professor at Stockholm University and head of the Tarfala research station, said in a statement.