House Karstark of Karhold is a noble house from Karhold in the north. They are a cadet branch of their overlords, the Starks of Winterfell, and are among their principal bannermen.
Their blazon is a white sunburst on black and their motto is "The Sun of Winter".
Karstarks are big, fierce men, bearded and long-haired, with brown hair and blue-grey eyes, and favor wearing cloaks made of the pelts of seals, bears, and wolves.
The Karstarks are descendants of the First Men and have the blood of the Starks of Winterfell in their veins from a thousand years before. Their founder was Karlon Stark, who put down a rebel lord and was granted lands for his valor. The castle he built was named Karl's Hold, but that soon became Karhold, and over the centuries the Karhold Starks became Karstarks. Karhold lies far to the northeast of Winterfell in the midst of a forest beyond the Last River, overlooking the Shivering Sea. East of Karhold are the Grey Cliffs.
Lord Rickard Karstark fought alongside Lord Eddard Stark at the Battle of the Trident.